World’s largest garden to come up in central Mumbai, says Gadkari

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 12 Jan 2018 08:21:18



THE Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) will create the “world’s largest garden” in central Mumbai by reclaiming land, Union Shipping and Ports Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Thursday.
“The Mumbai Port Trust will be reclaiming 350 hectares to create the world’s largest garden in Mumbai,” Gadkari said, speaking after the ground-breaking ceremony of a Rs 300 crore international cruise terminal here.

He said the proposal is already a part of the city’s development plan, and requested Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to use his special privileges to clear it.

Gadkari said in order to carry out a slew of citizen-centric activities as part of the Eastern Waterfront project, it is necessary to accord the status of special planning authority (SPA) to the MbPT.
Fadnavis, also present on the occasion, declared that his Government will grant the status to the MbPT.

MbPT chairman Sanjay Bhatia later told reporters that the proposed garden will be spread over 300 acres, bigger than Hyde Park in London. It will require 80 hectares or around 200 acres of land reclamation, which will be carried out after environmental clearances are received, he said, claiming that the project won’t have any adverse environmental impact.

The reclamation will have to be carried off Haji Bunder near Sewri, where the garden will be created, Bhatia said. Gadkari said works of Rs 2.41 trillion have been initiated in Maharashtra as part of the Sagarmala plan. The minister said the Rs 7,000 crore fourth terminal of JNPT is ready for commissioning. He also urged the Navy not to block developmental projects.

The swank new international cruise terminal which will come up in the Mumbai port is slated to cost Rs 300 crore, and will have all facilities like an airport with separate arrival and departure lounges and cater to around 700,000 tourists annually arriving or departing by cruise liners. It is expected to be ready by December 2019.

Fadnavis said that this international cruise terminal is part of the Government’s four-pronged policy to develop Mumbai on water, sky, ground and underground with water transport, new international airport, roads and flyovers, and the underground Mumbai Metro.

“This will make Mumbai a global cruise destination, create huge employment opportunities, increase the number of tourists and contribute to the GDP growth of Mumbai and Maharashtra,” he said. Spread over 4.15 lakh sq. feet, the terminal will be equipped to host cruise ships with a capacity of around 5,000 passengers, with restaurants, shopping, recreated and leisure activities.