The Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority’s (MHADA) plan to undertake the redevelopment of 128-acre Motilal Nagar—its first cluster redevelopment project—has again suffered a setback as it has received a lukewarm response from Project Management Consultants (PMC) for the second time.
After getting zero response for the bidding to appoint a PMC in October, this time, just two companies expressed their interest to be the consultant for the project. This has raised questions if MHADA could implement the project. A PMC will guide MHADA in choosing contractors, determining their eligibility and tender norms.
According to a senior MHADA official, this is a serious issue. “This is simply shocking as this is one of the biggest projects in the city,” said the official. “We had eased rules, compared to the last time and still managed to get only two bidders,” he added.
The PMC was to be appointed to prepare a roadmap to implement the project, which promised to generate at least 15,000-25,000 affordable housing units and also rehabilitate the old residents in brand new houses. However, resident associations have pointed to a possible conspiracy behind the poor response.
“Even the redevelopment of a single building attracts a lot of PMCs and here we have a situation where a 128-acre plot is getting such a poor response. This is just a ploy by MHADA to hand over the entire scheme to a private builder,” said Yuvraj Mohite, president, Motilal Nagar Vikas Samitee.
Motilal Nagar, constructed in 1960, was touted as the first cluster redevelopment project to be undertaken by MHADA. MHADA planned to rehabilitate the existing 3,628 tenants in 485 square feet houses and use the rest of the plot to create a housing stock. It had hence called for bids from the PMCs to design the plan of the redevelopment.
In the last few years, residents of Motilal Nagar were lured with mindboggling offers. Builders such as the RNA, HDIL and Vichare came up with proposals like 1,500 sq feet houses along with Rs11 lakh as corpus fund to each of the existing tenants.