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Plan to revamp Kabutarkhana in Dadar may hit heritage hurdle

The BMC has been making fresh plans to revamp Mumbai's iconic Kabutarkhana in Dadar, with the intention of easing traffic outside Dadar (West) station.

mumbai Updated: Dec 30, 2014 21:56 IST
Vaishnavi Vasudevan
Vaishnavi Vasudevan
Hindustan Times
Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation,Kabutarkhana

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has been making fresh plans to revamp Mumbai's iconic Kabutarkhana in Dadar, with the intention of easing traffic outside Dadar (West) station. The pigeon-feeding ground, which is home to nearly 5,000 pigeons, is located at an arterial junction in Dadar market, and witnesses heavy traffic movement.

The plan, however, is expected to hit a road block, with the BMC planning to reduce the size of the circle, which is listed as a heritage property.

Built in 1933, the Dadar Kabutarkhana was subsequently declared a heritage structure by the government. Due its location at a busy junction, the circle has proved to be a bottleneck for traffic.

The first proposal to revamp the project fell through five years ago. Now, to ease traffic, the local ward office and the roads department have proposed to give the revamp project another shot. The Kabutarkhana has a fountain, a pigeon-breeding ground and a small dispensary, with three landscape islands around it.

Civic officials said restoration of the Kabutarkhana will mean smoother movement of traffic in the area. “Our plan is to reduce the circumference. However, since it is listed as a heritage structure, we are facing hurdles. A proposal will be sent to the heritage committeefor approval,” said a senior civic official, requesting anonymity.

Additional municipal commissioner SVR Srinivas said, “The fountain will be repaired and a glass roof installed, so people can get a good view. The Kabutarkhana will be given a better look and railings will be refurbished as well. The work will begin after approval is obtained from various departments.”

The heritage committee said no such proposal has been received from the BMC. The project is estimated to cost approximately Rs1 crore, and is expected to achieve completion by May 2015.

Five years ago, a plan to revamp the Kabutarkhana was proposed, but received flak from residents in the area. The earlier proposal had planned to raise the height of the structure and make it accessible by ladder, to ease congestion. It was also suggested that the structure be pulled down. This time, however, there are no such plans. “We only want to revamp the circle and reduce the circumference. There won’t be any changes that would affect the heritage look of the structure,” said an official.

First Published: Dec 30, 2014 21:29 IST