The two hours that Chief Minister Ashok Chavan had set aside to hear the woes of the 34 MLAs from Mumbai fell short with the representatives pouring their hearts on issues of infrastructure, redevelopment and water.
He will again meet them on Monday to dicuss the issues.
While MLAs from the city stressed on the problem of redevelopment of old and dilapidated buildings, the suburban MLAs were concerned about transport and water issues.
Chembur MLA Nawab Malik complained about the lack of adequate infrastructure planning in the city pointing to the first and second corridors of the Metro. He said: “There should be larger perspective when infrastructure projects were being implemented. Shouldn’t the first metro line that ends at Ghatkopar be linked to second Mankhurd, so that there is seamless connectivity?”
A majority of the legislators were in favour of relaxation of environmental norms specifically the Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) to make way for redevelopment of old buildings, slums along the coast and big ticket infrastructure projects.
About 38 per cent of the city falls in CRZ II and so redevelopment is limited to Floor Space Index (FSI) of 2. Over 4,000 buildings and seven shanty towns cannot be developed through the proposed cluster redevelopment scheme unless CRZ norms are relaxed, they argued.
“We have asked for the resolution to increase the FSI from 2.5 to 3, rework on the categories of old cess buildings and increase the cap on the area of homes to be built from 750 sq ft to 1,500 sq ft. This is needed to expedite the redevelopment process,” said Amin Patel, MLA from south Mumbai. Over 10,000 buildings in Mumbai are waiting for a go-ahead for such redevelopment, he added.