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Largest slum relocation to take off

Global tenders worth Rs 7500 cr will be invited for makeover of Dharavi, report M Nandy and Gigil Varghese.

india Updated: Nov 17, 2006 21:38 IST

Finally, the world's largest slum rehabilitation project is all set to take off. Global tenders worth Rs 7500 crore will be invited for the makeover of Dharavi, the 535-acre slum pocket, by November-end.

On Friday, the state government approved the draft Development Control Regulations (DCR) which has been formulated specially for the Dharavi project. Asia's largest slum Dharavi, home to more than 3 lakh people, will metamorphose into a swanky residential and commercial hub in the future.

Speaking to HT, Officer on special duty, Dharavi Redevelopment Project, IS Chahal, "The Chief Minister's approval removed the final hurdle to begin the project which will about seven years to complete."

On November 21, there is a final meeting, which will finalise the various clauses that will be incorporated in the 90-pg tender document. International developers from 16 cities across the world like the US, UK, Dubai, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Netherlands will be bidding for this project. The project begins after 90 days from the date of issuing the tender document.

The approved revised DCR for Dharavi is good news for developers, which has raised the Floor Space Index (FSI) cap to 4.Chahal however argued that more than developers, Dharavi will benefit from this.

"The raised FSI will ensure that the Transfer of Developmental Rights which is generated from the project is consumed entirely within Dharavi both for the rehabilitation and the market sale components. Otherwise, the TDR would be used to the north of the Dharavi, maybe in Bandra or Juhu."

The basic idea of redeveloping Dharavi is that the developers will construct houses and by way of compensation, he gets a portion of the land for commercial development.

An amendment to the existing DCR 33(10) would make Dharavi the first project to rehabilitate industrial units within the area. The builder would also get an additional, uniform 1.3 incentive for every square feet that is developed, be it a municipal school or fire station.

The builder would then be able to sell this off as a saleable component in the open market. This incentive would cover not only slum tenements but also other kinds of residential, industrial, commercial properties and structures like fire stations, schools and municipal ward offices.

The redevelopment of Dharavi is crucial to the development of Mumbai, according to town planners. What is now a haphazard mess of hutments will be neatly divided into five sectors wherein each sector would have additional amenities like gardens and recreational space on their layout. Each sector would be given out to a consortium of builders who would then develop every aspect of it.

Once the project begins, the Dharavi area will turn into a massive construction site right in the heart of the city. Property experts said that the large-scale development will hugely raise the property rates of the area.

Anuj Puri, Managing Director of Trammel Crow Mehraj, property consultants said, "By conservative estimates, the property rates would be between Rs 8,000 – 10,000 per sq ft. This is because of its proximity to BKC and for its planned development."

Puri also believes that the area also has a lot of potential for retail and entertainment facilities.

First Published: Nov 17, 2006 20:37 IST