Research Projects

MASTER PLAN FOR THE PAREL MILL LANDS AREA

UDRI initiated the creation of a government study group on the conservation and redevelopment of textile mills located in central Mumbai, and is currently working with elected representatives to ensure the implementation of the study group's recommendations.

Background
There are 58 cotton textile mills in the city of Mumbai. Of these, 26 were deemed "sick" and were, therefore, taken over by the government of India: - 25 of these mills are managed by NTC (the National Textile Corporation) and 1 by MSTC (Maharashtra State Textile Corporation). The remaining 32 mills continue to be in the private sector.

Regulation 58 of the new development control regulations, which came into force in march 1991 provides for development of lands of sick and/or closed cotton textile mills on conditions that:
A. One-third of the land is given to the BMC for public open spaces.
B. 27 to 37% (depending on the area of the site) is given to MHADA and puss for housing.
C. The remaining land could then be developed by the owner for residential or commercial uses as may be permissible under the D.C.regulations in force.

In short, the D.C. regulations of 1991 intended to regulate the development i redevelopment of cotton textile mill lands so as to generate open spaces and public lousing for the city, in a manner Which would create coherent urban form. It is a truly unique opportunity for Mumbai - and that too in a congested area in the heart of the city, which has long been neglected.

Unfortunately, in reality, this has not happened. On the contrary, the sickness and closure of mills has frightened the workers into a state of insecurity. And such re-development that has occurred has been in a piecemeal and haphazard manner on a totally commercial basis without any portion of the land becoming available either for low-income housing or for pubic amenities. This has happened for a variety of reasons - one of the most crucial ones being the lack of Any overall planning and development strategy seeking to create coherent urban form, housing for low income groups and civic amenities, and generate new employment opportunities for workers thrown out 'of employment by the closure of the mills.

This is why the government of Maharashtra by its notification dated 29 February 1996 set up our study group to prepare an integrated development plan for these textile mill lands on the basis of certain principles specified therein. The study group has undertaken this work in coordination with the secretaries committee of the government, which was simultaneously studying other aspects of the same problem.