THE Central Railway and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) have joined hands to prepare a roadmap for the upgrade of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus railway station and its surrounding area. Under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, the Union government has picked 10 iconic locations for upgrade. The agencies managing these 10 sites are set to deliver a presentation in New Delhi on September 30.
The presentation for CST includes a year-long plan including measures to restore the heritage features in an area within 50 metres, 100 metres and 500 metres of the site to be executed over three months, six months and 12 months respectively.
While the Central Railway has roped in the faculty of the J J College of Architecture for the project, the BMC has appointed production designer Nitin Desai and the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH). The two agencies will meet on Monday to discuss modalities of the plan and prepare a preliminary report.
The A Ward office of the BMC will coordinate with Desai and INTACH on the work.
Assistant Municipal Commissioner Kiran Dighavkar said the civic body will take up measures to improve pedestrian movement and improve cleanliness of the area around the CST building. “We are planning to prepare a virtual tour of the area for the presentation and we will integrate our plan with the one the Central Railway will prepare. Apart from shifting the hawkers, we are also planning to improve and maintain a uniform standard of the flooring as well as the railings along pavements located 500 metres around the CST building,” said Dighavkar.
Other measures will include removing advertisement boards and posters from the pillars of the CST building as mentioned in the UNESCO guidelines. Services like sweeping and cleaning – which is currently done till 10 pm – will be conducted round the clock to improve the hygiene.
Taking up cleanliness measures of their own, the Central Railway are planning to conduct vertical cleaning of the building on a regular basis. CR’s additional general manager A K Shrivastava said their primary concern was to improve visibility of the south facade of the heritage structure. “As per guidelines, there should be a buffer of 15 metres around the CST building. The BEST bus depot and the tall trees in Bhatia garden nearby adds to the poor visibility of the south facade. The hawkers in the area affect the hygiene standards and the pollution from vehicles also affects the structure. We have to consider the feasibility of the plan like moving the BEST bus depot to another location close the railway station. We will discuss these issues with the BMC and work out a plan together,” said Shrivastava.