The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to construct four shelters for the evacuation of fishermen in case of cyclones.
The construction cost will be borne by the World Bank. All four buildings will be ready in next two years. The first proposal for the Rs 5-crore Mulund cyclone shelter has been put before the civic standing committee for approval, while other locations are Versova Andheri (W), Kurla and Malad.
“Once the work order is given, we will send the documents to the World Bank and they will release the funds. They have sanctioned Rs 25 crore for the construction of the cyclone shelter,” said LS Vhatkar, City Engineer (BMC).
The shelters will double up as schools on normal days. Therefore, they will have large halls to accommodate the rescuers. They will provide temporary accommodation but will also be used to during the monsoon.
A three-storey building will be constructed at the 1,954 sq metre plot at Mulund (West) reserved for civic schools. The building will have eight classrooms on each floor and a laboratory, library and computer room with other facilities such as lifts will be constructed. The building will be cyclone-proof and earthquake proof because it will have a strong pile foundation.
“We prefer sites near the coastline, which are vulnerable to cyclones,” said SS Shinde, Joint Municipal Commissioner (Disaster Management Cell). Each building will have the capacity to accommodate around 4,000 to 5,000 people.
“Compared to the city’s population, this number is obviously very little. But we will construct more shelters like this,” said Shinde. “If an old school building is to be reconstructed, then it will be rebuilt using cyclone proof technology,” he added.