The Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) is planning to open up a slew of citizen-focussed facilities being built at a cost of up to Rs 300 crore over the next six months, a top official has said.
“Many projects are in different stages of development and nearing completion. Works of around Rs 250-300 crore will be opened before the onset of the monsoon,” Sanjay Bhatia, the chairman of one of the country’s oldest ports, said.
It can be noted that from a cargo handling perspective, the port has ceded container traffic to the JNPT located across the harbour, and is now concentrating only on handling clean cargo.
It, however, remains one of the biggest land owners in the cramped megapolis and is undertaking a slew of projects aimed at benefiting the citizens and also the travel, tourism and hospitality sectors.
The projects to be completed include starting the ropax ship, which ferries both passengers and motor vehicles, from Mumbai to Mandwa for which a separate jetty and break water is being built, a ferry service connecting south Mumbai with Belapur in the satellite city of Navi Mumbai and beautification of the waterfront at Princess Dock.
He said a domestic cruise terminal with restaurants will also be inaugurated, which is slated to handle a cruise service between the financial capital and Goa that will be starting soon.
The projects to be inaugurated also include water taxis on the eastern waterfront, two floating restaurants at Gateway of India and one at Marine Drive, he said, adding that for deepening the tourism potential, a ferry service to the Kanhoji Angre island at Khanderi will also be started.
The port is planning a ground-breaking for the Rs 3090-crore International Cruise Terminal on January 11, and will take up to 18 months to complete the project that is aimed at upping the calls by global cruises to the country.
MbPT is also working on starting a jetty on Marine Drive near what was earlier called as the ‘Chhota Chowpatty’, which will aid the seaplane services and also watersport activities off the western coastline, he said.
The plan to have a modern marina, which can welcome the smaller-but-exquisite yatchs is also on track, Bhatia said, adding the facility may start before the onset of the monsoon as well.