IN A move that will change the nature of Bandra Kurla Complex, the city’s topmost business district will soon have more residential real estate development and high-end luxury apartments coming up alongside premium office complexes.
The chief minister-led Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), which is the special planning authority for BKC, has decided to explore a more mixed-use development on all vacant plots in the business district. The authority is also hoping to liven up the business district, which wears a deserted look after working hours, by adding more residential development.
Accordingly, in case of its commercial plots in G Block where most of the vacant land is, the authority will allow developers to use up to 30 per cent of the permissible construction area for residential development at no extra cost or premium. Plots in the G Block, reserved for residential purposes, will however have to be developed as residential structures, though the MMRDA will permit developers to use the ground and first floors as commercial spaces.
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis gave his nod to the proposal at the MMRDA’s board meeting earlier this month.
A senior MMRDA official, who did not wish to be named, said, “Several companies interested in bidding for plots in the Bandra Kurla Complex had demanded a more mixed-use development as it is financially more viable for them. Now that the authority has approved it, we will send a formal proposal to the state government to amend the norms.”
The MMRDA, which does not get any budgetary allocation from the state, funds various infrastructure work in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region by raising finances through its land bank.
Officials said the authority was currently in the process of auctioning one of its largest remaining commercial plots measuring about 1.5 hectare after a six-year hiatus, and most interested bidders had asked it to permit partial residential development.
“We currently have about 25 to 30 hectare of vacant land in Bandra Kurla Complex with a total potential for built-up area adding up to 120 hectare. These plots will get the benefit of mixed-use development,” the MMRDA official said.
As of April 2015, BKC had just three residential projects to offer, adding up to 220 units, as per a report by Cushman & Wakefield, a real estate research and consultancy firm. The report added that as per the zoning details for various blocks in the BKC, only 54.8 hectare of the total 370.6 hectare was set aside for purely residential development as of now.
Of this, the G Block, the nerve centre of most activity in the complex, is spread across 135.1 hectare, of which 19.3 hectare is currently earmarked for only residential development.