Mumbai Port Trust gets special planning authority status
Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said an SPA status would ensure MbPT does not have to go around running for approvals from authorities including the state government and the BMCmumbai Updated: Jan 12, 2018 09:42 IST
The state government has decided to accord Special Planning Authority status to Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) to undertake its ambitious make over project, which includes an international cruise terminal besides a 300-acre garden off the Arabian Sea near Sewri.
Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said an SPA status would ensure MbPT does not have to go around running for approvals from authorities including the state government and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). Fadnavis and the Union minister for transport and shipping Nitin Gadkari laid the foundation stone for construction of an international cruise terminal at Indira Dock at Ballard Estate on Thursday.
Fadnavis said development along the eastern waterfront will work wonders for Mumbai. "This will make Mumbai a global cruise destination. This will result in huge employment opportunities, increase the number of tourists as well as result in the state GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth,” the CM said.
This expansion of the terminal means that it will spread across 4.15 lakh sq ft area from the current 40,000 sq ft and will be able to handle 300 ships from the current 55. Slated to cost Rs300 crore, the proposed terminal will have facilities like arrival and departure lounges and will cater to around 7 lakh tourists annually. The MbPT authorities have laid down an ambitious December 2019 target for opening this facility.
With this terminal, Mumbai is expected to handle 80% of the country’s cruise traffic and this will result in tourism boom with both national and international tourists making their way to the city. A domestic cruise from Mumbai to Goa is also expected to start soon.
The CM described the terminal as a part of the government's four-pronged strategy to develop Mumbai through water, air, ground and underground transport with a new international airport, flyovers, roads and Metro.
Another major project was the construction of a 300-acre garden designed on the lines of the Singapore-based Gardens by the Bay. “This will be bigger than the Hyde Park in London,” said Sanjay Bhatia, chairman, MbPT. He said that off the 300 acres, 160 acres needs to be reclaimed off the sea. It will be reclaimed by using debris generated from various projects like the underground Metro.