Mhada can save Rs 250 crore with rehab flats at Worli | Mumbai News – Times of India

MUMBAI: Maharashtra Housing Area Development Authority (Mhada) could save Rs 250 crore if it replaces transit tenements with rehab flats at Worli. Three months back MHADA began laying the foundation for three transit buildings at Worli, which will take at least three years to complete. Saving time and preventing cost-escalation has now forced the authority to relook at one of its most ambitious housing projects in the city.
The transit tenements are being constructed on open spaces within Worli BDD chawl complex. Constructing rehab flats, rather than transit tenements, is being considered along with other issues, that are proving to be hurdles in redevelopment of BDD chawls at Worli, Naigaum in Dadar and at N M Joshi Marg, Lower Parel.
A committee comprising Mhada vice-president, chief engineer (roads), public works department and chief officer (Mumbai Board) is discussing how to speed up the redevelopment.
Yogesh Mhase, chief officer (Mumbai Board), said redevelopment is moving at a very slow pace and work must be speeded up. While Worli BDD, the largest cluster with 121 chawls, is estimated to take 10 years for redevelopment, Naigaum and N M Joshi are expected to take at least eight years. In the case of Naigaum, the contractor, Larsen & Toubro, had even served a termination notice as MHADA in three years failed to complete the eligibility survey and to hand over vacant land to the contractor to begin construction.
“The government is keen the project is completed in five years,” said Mhase. He said deciding eligibility was crucial as government had promised a free 500 sq ft flat to eligible tenants, and is one of the biggest stumbling blocks. The promise of a free flat has led to disputes within families, often resulting in violence and police cases. The committee will also decide if the cut-off date for eligibility for commercial units can be extended beyond June 2017.
The committee is also considering a multi-level car park, rather than three-level basement parking, as it would reduce maintenance costs. Mhada promised to bear maintenance costs for 10 years for the rehab buildings.
The committee, meeting everyday, will submit recommendations to the government by January 10.
Mhase said changes that will be proposed by the committee will be within the framework of the contract signed. “The process of deciding eligibility for phase I is on. Shifting of eligible tenants has been delayed on account of Covid-19 and is unlikely for 3-4 months. This process of consultation does not impact work currently under way,” he said.

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