More than 3,200 people living in old, dilapidated structures are hoping to soon trade their crumbling walls for bigger, better structures.
The Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (Mhada) has started the process of rehabilitating these tenants and hopes to provide homes to most of them by March.
Of these, 2,200 tenants have been languishing in transit camps for three decades now. The rest are residents of 67 Prime Minister's Grant Programme (PMGP) Colonies across the city.
"We plan to complete the allotment process for transit camp residents by March," said Prasad Lad, chairman, Mhada (Mumbai Repair and Reconstruction Board). The redeveloped homes are spread across the city and measure 300 sq ft, almost twice the size of transit camp homes.
Mhada has procured these houses through private redevelopment projects as builders have to share surplus Floor Space Index (FSI) with the state agency.
The PGMP colony residents will be given redeveloped homes as a pilot project. The proposal for this has been cleared by the housing ministry and is awaiting the chief minister's nod.
For residents of transit camps, this development was long awaited. They had moved into the camps years ago, hoping to move back after redevelopment of their premises. However, most of these projects were disrupted or delayed or got stuck in litigation.
Currently, there is no provision for redevelopment of PGMP colonies, and residents are languishing in homes measuring 160 -220 sq ft. The colonies, spread across areas such as Umerkhadi, Byculla, Kamathipura, are further neglected because MP/MLA funds are not applicable to them.
Lad said if the pilot project on the Umerkhadi colony was succesful, others would follow.