A marina on the east coast of Mumbai, the second one after Kochi, is all set to roll out! The marina is to be developed in Belapur by Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB) on a public-private partnership model. The waterfront project on the south side of Navi Mumbai will offer a range of amenities like berthing (minimum 30 berths), fueling, boat storage, a boat launch facility, a water treatment plant, a boat repair facility, a walkway bridge, waste management and battery recharge facilities. Ocean Blue has bagged the Belapur marina development contract from MMB. Ocean Blue is one of India’s largest boating companies and have also built the Kochi International Marina, which is currently the only marina present in India. Their marina project is expected to be operational by May 2018.
The Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) is also giving finishing touches to a master plan that will completely revamp the land along the eastern water front of Mumbai. Key features of what they have been proposing since a couple of years include:
1. a 7-km long Marine Drive between Mazagaon Docks and Wadala, nearly twice the length of the Queen’s Necklace in the West
2. an Ecological Garden which will be five times the size of the Oval Maidan
3. a Marina on the waterfront which can park around 300 yachts
4. Ferry Wharf(Bhaucha Dhakka) to be connected with Navi Mumbai and Alibaug through water transport, with a pickup point to be located somewhere near Sewri or Wadala
5. the world’s highest Rope-way to connect Elephanta Caves and Haji Bunder/Sewri
6. a Complex to house Central Government Offices (CGO), to bring all the offices, spread across the city and occupying prime real estate, under one roof
7. Mumbai Eye (on the lines of London Eye)
The city’s biggest piece of vacant land that is available for development in Mumbai is its east coast, owned by Mumbai Port Trust. MbPT is the city’s largest land owner and controls the docklands which stretch from Colaba to Wadala on the eastern seafront of the city. MbPT intends to develop an all-weather marina facility at Victoria and Princess Docks, while Marine Drive is set to get a face lift with two jetties at Chowpatty and at NCPA. The eastern coast between Sewri and South Mumbai will have its very own Marina Bay like the one in Singapore, complete with entertainment hubs and the all-weather marina. The eastern water front development plan thus aims to boost tourism and infrastructure. The development plan on the east coast will be carried out in 2 phases. The first phase of the development plan will begin on a part of land which is available right away. The second phase will begin after the slum rehabilitation program kicks into action. To make this master plan a reality, around 10,000 hutments on MbPT land will have to be rehabilitated. There are 35,000 families, who have encroached the place and will have to be rehabilitated before the work begins.
It has been three decades since discussions for a marina in Mumbai began. A pipe dream, a promise on paper, endless floating bids and quixotic projects are just some of the many unpleasant terms used to describe its progress. One has to see it to believe it and we hope to watch plans unfold in 2018. It is important that more citizens visit the port lands and become aware of how this part of the city can be used ecologically to create open spaces, amenities and institutions for the public. If informed citizens were to unite and demand infrastructure, the land that lies vacant might be saved from going the way of the mill lands. Instead of aiming for superlatives, development in smaller phases with reduced litigation makes sense and would accelerate the process. Thus to conclude, we hope you enjoyed this little synopsis on what’s said to be happening on the city’s waterfront. Information in this article has been compiled from the following links: