South Mumbai’s bandstand all set to get its groove back
The Cooperage Bandstand was said to be a family excursion destination a hub for musical bands in the late 1960s; the most popular band being that of the Navy.mumbai Updated: Apr 23, 2018 12:46 IST
The acoustic hotspot of yesteryear Mumbai is ready to get a fresh lease of life. After restoring the Cooperage Bandstand in south Mumbai, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is also looking to revive the band culture at the landmark heritage structure.
The Cooperage Bandstand was said to be a family excursion destination a hub for musical bands in the late 1960s; the most popular band being that of the Navy, it is said. Similar bandstands came up at Horniman Circle, Girgaum Chowpatty, Victoria Garden, Hanging Garden, King’s Circle, Dadar Parsi Colony and Borivli National Park, all of which were maintained by the BMC. But the music is said to have died by the beginning of the 1970s.
A senior civic official from the heritage department of the BMC said they are initially looking at approaching schools to play music and make Cooperage Bandstand a cultural hotspot like the old times. The official said, “We will soon inaugurate the renovated area and simultaneously, look for bands to perform, especially during the weekends.” As part of the restoration, the wooden structure, which had decayed over the years, has been restored completely.
Conservation architect Rahul Chemburkar of Vaastuvidhaan projects said, “During the process of excavation, we also discovered the original Porbandar stone base and flight of steps were built in cardinal positions. We took steps to retain this and bring it to the necessary elevation.” Chemburkar was assisted by contractor JPCL in the work.
The roof was also replaced with aluminum sheets to give it its original curve. The seating areas have been given a facelift for Mumbaikars to enjoy an uninterrupted view of the performances in the future.
In a delight for heritage lovers in the city, the civic body has been undertaking the restoration of pyaaus or drinking water fountains in south Mumbai and 16 British-era milestones. To showcase Mumbai’s glorious past, BMC also plans to beautify areas in and around prominent heritage precincts in Girgaum for a heritage walk.