Renowned architect Hafeez Contractor has called for an immediate change to Development Control (DC) rules so that buildings can be built with uniformity and in accordance with forward-looking laws.
Speaking at the CEO Round Table – Infrastructure on the challenges of making Mumbai a class city at the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Global Solution Summit 2022 held at the Four Seasons Hotel, Worli, Contractor rued that policies being drawn up today were not worth it and the good laws of the past were being destroyed.
“Why are we talking only of creating iconic buildings? There is a need to completely change our laws going forward. Each and every building needs to be proper and nice-looking. We have already lost a lot of time and the immediate need is to change all our DC rules and also ensure that social housing gets focus,” he said. Citing that the ongoing coastal road project had been planned in 1989, but only took off thirty-odd years later, added that there was a need to plan well and then quickly implement projects.
Contractor informed delegates that development laws being framed currently were completely against Mumbai, an island city. “Everyone is talking about 430 sq km. But of this 430 sq km, a hundred square kilometres goes off in Sanjay Gandhi National Park, 10 sq km goes off in mangroves, and another 30-40 sq km is defence land. Finally, we are left with only 100 sq km for development,” he pointed out.
Rajan Bandelkar, President, NAREDCO India called for a joint effort between all stakeholders to improve Mumbai’s infrastructure. “It is a real shame for us to say that we live in Mumbai. Other cities have exceedingly done better than us. Noida, Hyderabad, and even Raipur have better and wider roads. In Mumbai, the people first settle and roads follow. It has to ideally be the other way round and that planning is missing here,” he said.
Bandelkar advised the political class to deliver on committed policies rather than focus on votes alone. “It’s time to move from vote-bank politics and frame policies and create infrastructure for people to use. This should automatically get you the votes,” he said. The NAREDCO India President called for politicians and builders to work together to ensure a better future for Mumbai.
Masood Mallick, CEO of Re Sustainability Limited also spoke at the CEO Round Table – Infrastructure on the challenges of making Mumbai a class city that was moderated by Amit Gossain, MD Kone Elevator – India and South Asia.
The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Global Solution Summit 2022, a conclave focusing on the Development Plan for Greater Mumbai was inaugurated by MP Rahul Shewale in the presence of Prof. Shrihari, Traffic and Transportation Advisor to the Govt. of Karnatak; Christopher Brown, Chief Political and Economic Affairs (US consulate), and Ramamurthy Mayavan, Editor-in-Chief, Construction Times.
The event also witnessed Chief Minister, Eknath Shinde attending the concluding session of the summit where he presented a white paper highlighting suggestions for improving basic facilities provided to the citizens of Mumbai. The Chief Minister also presented the BAM Awards 2022 honouring the city’s best builders, architects, and building material suppliers for their role in creating quality infrastructure.
Mumbai Metropolitan Region Global Solution Summit 2022 is recognized by prominent entities like Mumbai Metropolitan Region Authority (MMRDA), Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC), Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA), Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC). Senior government officials from these departments also attended the event and presented concrete solutions to transform the city.