THE MUMBAI Port Trust (MbPT) on Tuesday accepted proposals from six bidders shortlisted for a massive redevelopment project along Mumbai’s eastern seafront. According to MbPT, the project, covering 500 hectares of land along the waterfront, would revamp the eastern facade of the city in the coming years.
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The plan is to implement an infrastructural overhaul of international standards in the region through new offices, residential areas, recreational activities, integrated multi-modal public transport system, convention centre, museum, tourism activities, water transport, promenades, plazas, water sports, cycling tracks and entertainment hubs, among other non-port activities for people of the city.
The MbPT also aims to “unlock commercial value of its land asset, which is currently untapped.” “We are preparing a plan for 500 hectares of land on the eastern seafront, of which 150 hectares will be utilised for allied operations of the Mumbai port. The remaining 350 hectares will be used for iconic redevelopment for the city,” said MbPT chairman Sanjay Bhatia.
According to Bhatia, the waterfront development is being done keeping in mind the needs of the city and its growing population.
Over the concerns of slum dwellers residing in the area, the MbPT chairman said the redevelopment will
include slum rehabilitation. “There are about 15 hectares of slums around Darukhana area and around 14,000 families live there. Slum-dwellers will be rehabilitated in the same region, instead of being dislocated,” he said. MbPT had recently denied land to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for affordable housing. The chairman maintained that the MbPT land was meant for the ambitious redevelopment project.
The chairman also added that the redevelopment project would be environment friendly and that the
trust would take take all requisite approvals from authorities such as the BMC, the Green Tribunal, among others, to address environmental concerns, including reclamation work. The chairman also talked
about plans for a 100-acre garden in the area. According to the MbPT, a detailed transportation plan will also be prepared for the region, which will include a high speed train from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus to Panvel.
“The redevelopment plan will change Mumbai,” the chairman added.
Six bidders, each a consortium of construction, planning and consultancy firms, gave detailed master plan presentations to the MbPT Tuesday, outlining their vision for the eastern seafront region. The
MbPT, along with members from Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) reviewed the presentations. The decision on the final bidder will be taken before December 10.
Among the the bidders, a consortium of Italy-based engineering firm 3TI Progetti, real estate firm JLL and Mumbai-based Architect Hafeez Contractor firm, the first to give their presentation Tuesday, also maintained that it was not possible to implement the project without developing social housing.
“Our proposal stresses on good quality of life for people of Mumbai,” said Flavio Camboni, project
manager at 3TI Progetti. He added that social housing would be well connected with public transport.
The firm’s proposals had detailed plans of a public transport system, which would include roads, monorails, light rails and cycling lanes. The plans would be to build around existing suburban rail system in the region.
According to Apurva Parikh, associate architect at Hafeez Contractor firm and one of the lead designers in their project proposal, the infrastructure cost alone could go up to 300 to 400 million dollars. The project would create 44 million square feet of new office space for 2.5 lakh workers. The firm’s plan also includes 90,000 homes.
MbPT has been focusing on redevelopment around Mumbai’s seafront to boost tourism and non-port activities for the general public.