Tuesday, June 25, 2024
HomeEditorialSadly, the saviours of Mumbai Mangroves and salt pans are scarified Part...

Sadly, the saviours of Mumbai Mangroves and salt pans are scarified Part – 2

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coastal, coastal road project, india, mumbai development, mumbai roads, coastal, mumbai, mmrda, bmc, redevelopment
Image: egis-india.com

If we look at 2019’s final draft of DP, 2,100 hectares of salt pan lands are now demarcated for the construction of 10 lakh affordable housing development, 1,100 hectares for tourism development and only 30 hectares for salt pans.

Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) inspected the bridge and found it to be in a miserable condition. The bridge connects the station to Saifee Hospital and Hinduja College. After BMC’s inspection of several bridges, many structural defects were detected on Charni Road’s north end Foot Over Bridge (FOB) that connects the station to Saifee Hospital and Hinduja College.

The authorities have closed the bridge for pedestrian access, however, the period for the bridge being non-functional is not known. Going towards Churchgate, the Western Railway has decided to shut down the foot over bridge (FOB) at Dadar Station from May 14 2019. This happened after the audit report submitted by IIT-Bombay suggested its demolition. It has been mentioned that the structure of the bridge is not safe and should be demolished.

The WR informed that the South FOB at Dadar station will remain closed for the safety of passengers from May 14 onwards. This bridge is heavily used by the passengers while moving through platforms on the West side of Dadar station. However, the report mentions that the 6.5-metre-wide iron bridge that was built in 1993 is not ready to take such heavy traffic.

Meanwhile, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has decided to remove the rooftops from 21 FOBs on Western and Eastern Expressway. MMRDA informed that they have taken this decision to avoid unnecessary load on the bridges.

After the Maharashtra government confirmed to raze 54,000 mangroves for the bullet train project, Congress leader Milind Deora urged then CM Fadnavis to find solutions in order to protect the mangroves and salt pan lands. In order to make way for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dream project to construct the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train, the Maharashtra government has confirmed that 54,000 mangroves will be removed across 13.36 hectares of land in Maharashtra.

This has raised serious concerns among several environmentalists and the opposition parties. They were vocal about saying that such development plans that are compromising mangrove and salt pans will put Mumbai at Risk, serious questions were raised. However, with the Maharashtra government razing 54,000 mangroves, it seems that they have forgotten the lessons of the 2005 flood in Mumbai that killed over 1,000 people and the city faced huge losses.

Congress leader Milind Deora urged the then Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to find solutions in order to protect the mangroves and saltpan lands. even the people of Mumbai request the government to refrain from any development activities on the saltpan lands after the state government proposed affordable housing on the same.

The Maharashtra government’s decision to remove 54,000 mangroves to make way for the bullet train project was confirmed by state Transport Minister Diwakar Raote in the ongoing state legislature monsoon session. 1,781 acres of salt pans spread across Mumbai to be opened up for real estate.

Salt pans are crucial to Mumbai’s ecology, as according to a 2016 Mumbai Metropolitan Reg-ion Development Authority report, they safeguard the city against floods. Salt pans spread over 1,781 acres (721 hectares) in Mumbai are set to be opened up for development. The land, whose current market value will be around Rs 53,000 crores, is almost twice the size of Mumbai’s prime commercial hub, Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC), which is spread over 914 acres.

FSI up to 8 in areas near commute centres like Dadar station, Andheri station, Churchgate station. In the Govts development plan 2034, it has been mentioned that areas near busy railway stations and metro stations will get an FSI up to 8. This means that taller buildings will be the way to go in the future. In a land-starved city like ours, going vertical is the only option.

Opening up of the Eastern sea-front land. If you’ve ever driven on the Eastern Freeway, you would’ve realised that on the East of the Freeway there are a lot of these shipbuilding yards, dock areas, etc. Well, that land belongs to Mumbai Port Trust. Mumbai port is one of the most inefficient ports in India, with a lot of costs and not enough revenue to compensate for the costs. The government has thought of opening up the 1800 acres of portland for development in a ‘planned’ manner. Time will tell how well-planned it is, but 1800 acres of extra land in our city can do wonders.

While MMR limits are only till Dahisar in Western suburbs, Mulund in the Central suburbs and Mankhurd in the Eastern suburbs. The entire Navi-Mumbai and Thane belt is one of the fastest developing real-estate markets of India. It’s very interesting to see that Mumbai’s Mantralaya is at the southern tip of Mumbai; Nariman Point. The govt is supposed to be central, both in terms of governance and location. A good idea would’ve been to have the Mantralaya to someplace in Navi Mumbai so that the city could’ve been planned more efficiently since, unlike Mumbai, Navi Mumbai didn’t have the problem of being water-locked from 3 sides.

The entire development would’ve been centred around Navi Mumbai. In the future too, the areas of governance will be far off in Nariman Point or maximum they’d consider BKC. How much ever MMR expands, it’s always going to be in the ‘far-flung’ suburbs.

See any real-estate ad today and they’re all offering you the luxuries of life at low costs. The luxury real-estate trend is here to stay as the people of the city get more exposed to the lifestyle, they’ll start demanding it more. The cost definitely will not be as low as it is today. Mumbai can’t have an affordable housing market and we should stop expecting that. A great investment today for the next 20 years would be to find a real estate project which gives you the most amenities with the least neighbours. True exclusivity and luxury will always be the ‘space’ that you get in Mumbai.

Let us hope, by 2035 we will have the Metros currently planned phases up to and running. Commutes will become hassle-free but not for very long, Mumbai is that person who throws a huge party for everyone but always invites more people than it can host. Housing for all in Mumbai is a real task because not everyone will be able to afford it.

Ramifications of obliterating the natural buffer between the Arabian Sea and the island city.


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Vaidehi Taman
Vaidehi Tamanhttps://authorvaidehi.com
Vaidehi Taman an Accredited Journalist from Maharashtra is bestowed with three Honourary Doctorate in Journalism. Vaidehi has been an active journalist for the past 21 years, and is also the founding editor of an English daily tabloid – Afternoon Voice, a Marathi web portal – Mumbai Manoos, and The Democracy digital video news portal is her brain child. Vaidehi has three books in her name, "Sikhism vs Sickism", "Life Beyond Complications" and "Vedanti". She is an EC Council Certified Ethical Hacker, OSCP offensive securities, Certified Security Analyst and Licensed Penetration Tester that caters to her freelance jobs.
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