Municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta, on Thursday evening, unveiled the Bomonjee Hormarjee Wadia Clock Tower and Seth Gangalal V Mulji Nandlal Religious & Charitable Trust Pyav — both century-old heritage structures.
Kala Ghoda Association (KGA), that funded the restorations, had taken up the structures to give them facelift. The association also looks to revive the area by reviving age-old heritage constructions. KGA appointed architects from Urban Design Research Institute (UDRI) for the restoration project.
The prime conservation architect of the iconic structures, Vikas Dilawari, said that the future of the structures looked really bleak and the KGA had saved them at the nick of time.
“We had to repair right from scratch since the structure was about to bite the dust. Another challenge was that the area is also a traffic roundabout which makes it all the more difficult,” said Dilawari.
He added that it took them around six to eight months to revamp the two structures since they also had to maintain the aesthetics.
Maneck Davar, KGA chairman, said that there were future projects lined up in the near future. “People are also interested and enthusiastic about it since these structures had been closed down for a very long time and nobody paid any attention to it,” he said.
Rohinton Pagdiwala, a Dadar resident who attended the event, is associated with both the heritage structures. “I used to work here before I retired. It gives me great pleasure to see that we are trying to restore what could have been lost in force of time,” he said.
Pagdiwala added that it is important to look back in the past to determine our future course of action and to ensure that we are in right path. “That is why they are heritage and not old.”
The clock tower, located at the junction of Bazaar Gate Street and Perin Nariman Street, Fort, was constructed in 1882 while the Pyav underground well located below Horniman Circle garden, was excavated in 1811.