Mumbai to take on a new skin
As we know a Mumbai makeover has been on the agenda for some time now. It will cost approximately Rs 332,000 crore. It includes the entire Mumbai Metropolitan Region – including satellite towns like Thane, Navi Mumbai, the Mira-Bhayandar belt, the Vasai-Virar belt and the Kalyan-Dombivli and Ambarnath townships. All infrastructure, including power supply, water supply, drainage and real estate are slated to be improved.
Some of the bigger projects in the offing are the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link connecting Sewri and Nhava, the Mumbai Metro Rail Project, the western expressway sealink, the Bandra Worli sea link which is to be completed by 2008, and the Worli-Nariman Point link. There are also grand plans to make Mumbai a world financial hub as the Bombay Stock Exchange is ranked fifth in the world by the number of trades per year.
Some smaller projects in the pipeline are cleanliness drives, childrens parks, theme gardens, a plaza at the Gateway of India, slum re-development, a Rs 60 crore disaster management system and beautification of areas like the beaches, Haji Ali and ofcourse…Marine Drive.
Ofcourse, there are problems and maybe Mumbai cannot be transformed into Shanghai (the dream of the government)…but yes, we are getting there.
Marine Drive’s beautification is on full swing. We went there the other day and saw some hectic activity. Difficult to walk on the pavements as they are choc-o-bloc with tin sheds and repair material, but hopefully its going to be done soon.
A new bus-stop coming up on Marine Drive.
The photograph below is a distant view of the Bandra Worli sea-link in progress. The skyline is changing rapidly…
With all this feverish activity, Mumbai will soon be transformed, unrecognizable for anyone who visits the city after a decade. However, no one need worry that the city will lose its character and its old world charm. There are plenty of heritage buildings that will protect the city’s unique identity.
The building below is the Western Railway headquarters building, built in 1899. Its one of the country’s heritage sites.
The picture below is of Crawford Market, built in 1871. Its been renamed as Jyotiba Phule Market (no one calls it that!), but originally it was named after the Englishman Arthur Crawford, Bombay’s first Municipal Commissioner. Its been declared a heritage site.
(All photographs are copyrighted)
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