April 8, 2015 2:22:52 am
Owing to exclusion of crucial heritage structures from the draft development plan (DP) released by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the Mumbai Heritage Conservation Committee (MHCC) has decided to send its suggestions and objections to Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte to immediately include the structures. The decision was taken at the committee’s meeting held on Tuesday.
The issue came to light when the committee took up the DP for scrutiny last week. Almost two-thirds of the 1,500 structures have been ripped of their heritage status in the city’s blueprint for the next 20 years. A member of the committee said, “We have discussed and created a detailed list of suggestions and objections that will be sent early next week. The main objection is the exclusion of crucial heritage structures. We will also send our suggestions on the revised development control regulations (DCR).”
Some of the glaring exclusions are the listed Grade-I Town Hall, one of the finest examples of neo-classical architecture in India and which houses the Asiatic Society of Bombay; the landmark Marine Drive precinct, whose collection of Art Deco buildings are the second largest in the world after Florida’s Miami beach; many of the Victorian Neo-Gothic and Indo-Saracenic structures that adorn the Fort precinct and the British-era open spaces, including the Grade I Oval Maidan.
A study conducted by the Urban Design Research Institute (UDRI), a group of urban planners, reveals that almost 70 per cent of the heritage structures in both the island city and suburban Mumbai have been kept out of the blueprint.
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