A multi-storey tower is marked as a ‘parking lot’; a school with a playground is marked only as ‘other educational amenity’; and a residential building housing commercial outlets is a ‘market’. In a congested city like Mumbai, which has followed the concept of mixed-land use for decades, the newly released designated survey is of no use. Released by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the designated survey document, instead of recognising areas for multi-purpose utility, has marked them for single-use.
The designated survey is the first phase of work the civic body has undertaken while creating the revised draft development plan (DP) 2034.
The multi-storey tower Kalpataru Avana in Parel has been marked as a ‘parking lot’, even though the same document acknowledges the residential tower with parking lots. The survey has got it wrong in several such instances, especially in the island city.
In Bandra, a ground-plus-six structure that houses a library on the ground floor and has apartments on the other floors has been marked as a ‘library’ in the survey. Similarly, another ground-plus-nine-storey residential tower has been marked as a ‘welfare centre’.
According to urban planners, the lack of a designation for multi-purpose utility can have disastrous consequences.
For instance, if a residential building has been marked as a market and it is up for redevelopment, the document can be misused by the developer to cut-off essential components.
It can also be misinterpreted by urban planners, who might be unaware of the on-ground realities.
There are several schools, which have open grounds, but have been marked as ‘other educational amenity’ in the survey. For instance, the St Mary’s basketball court at Byculla has been marked as a primary and secondary school, when the actual use of site refers to a playground. Urban planners said the lack of reservation of a playground can provide leeway for development on the plot.
Senior civic officials refused to comment, saying all suggestions and objections from citizens will be taken into account.