Master Plan

Mumbai Planners oppose MMR Development around Thane

A group of city planners has criticised the rough draft for developing a section of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) around Thane

creek, drawn by an international firm of architects. They claim that the draft has failed to take into account the problems on the ground.

Architect Julian Jain of GMP International had pitched for changing the focus of development from the Mumbai city to the MMR. Among his recommendations were reclamation of land in and around the Thane creek. This, he said, would be easier than getting new land for development-an idea that was opposed by farmers. GMP, an international firm based in Hamburg, Germany, had earlier planned certain areas in Frankfurt and developed a new city called Lingang near Shanghai.

UPS Madan, head of the Mumbai Transformation Unit of the All India Institute of Local Self Government, opposed the reclamation plan. Madan, who holds the rank of a secretary in the state government, said reclamation was not allowed by the Centre and would lead to environmental problems as there were large clusters of mangroves in the area.

P K Das, a city architect said, “This is Google planning, they have missed the feedback from the ground.” The round table discussion was called by Bombay First, an NGO, and the Mumbai Transformation Unit to discuss ideas for solving urban problems.

Original article here.

Legislation Master Plan

‘Changes’ in development plan worry citizens

The civic body’s new Development Plan (DP), slated to be released in 2011, is generating fear in the minds of active citizens as areas reserved for municipal markets in the old DP have gradually been parceled over to private parties for years.

A Right to Information (RTI) application filed by activist Vidya Vaidya revealed that many such plots on the DP reserved for municipal markets have disappeared and, instead, commercial super markets have come up.

Similarly, reservation of open spaces for recreations grounds and playgrounds, sculptor’s studios, municipal primary schools and hospitals have also disappeared from the DP.

In 2006, General Arun Kumar Vaidya Nagar Rahawasi Sangh had won a case where the concerned authorities were asked to build municipal markets within two years.


Cities Master Plan

Jama Masjid Masterplan runs into a roadblock

Days before the Jama Masjid redevelopment plan is to come up for hearing at Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC), the caretaker of Delhi’s monuments — Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) — has expressed reservations about the project. It has warned the MCD that Jama Masjid area now comes under the buffer zone of World Heritage Site Red Fort and, therefore, no major changes can take place in the area.

At a meeting held recently to discuss the project, ASI officials feared that the Jama Masjid plan was sounding similar to the controversial Taj Heritage Corridor project where a mall and commercial complexes were due to come up between Taj Mahal and Agra Fort. It is learnt that ASI is not happy with the "commercial" aspect of the Jama Masjid plans, fearing it would affect the heritage value of the zone.