The state government has decided to relocate the Doppler Weather Radar (DWR) from 18-storey Archana Building in Colaba’s Navy Nagar area in South Mumbai to a remote suburban location.
The reason: at least 50 high-rise projects in south and central Mumbai were stuck after the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) capped their vertical growth at 70 metres as they fall within the 10-km radius of the Doppler radar.
On June 10, dna first reported about high-rise projects being affected by the Doppler radar.
“More than 50 high-rise projects were stuck. Unless and until they submit a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the IMD, the high-rise committee will not approve the projects,” said a senior civic official, who is part of the highrise committee.
Two years ago, a no-objection certificate from the IMD was made mandatory for high-rise buildings within a radius of 10 km around the Doppler radar.
Guardian minister Jayant Patil had called a meeting of city MLAs to get stock of city’s development and address various issues.
“Due to the Doppler Weather Radar, redevelopment in south Mumbai has been virtually stopped.
The buildings were demolished, but could not undertake the construction because they do not get NOC from the IMD. Mumbai is the only city in the world where Doppler radar was set up at the heart of the city. Ideally, it should have been installed in suburbs. Moreover, DWR will not face any problem while scanning the sky and giving effective prediction,” Amin Patel, an MLA from south Mumbai, said.
In the meeting, guardian minister Jayant Patil ensured that they will ask the IMD to find out a suitable site to relocate the Doppler radar. Patel said there were more than 10 highrise towers which fall within the 10km radius of DWR. “What about these towers? Are we going to demolish them? So, it is better to relocate DWR to a convenient place where no one will raise objection. I put forth my demand and the minister has agreed to act upon it,” Patel said.
“It is very difficult to shift the Doppler radar from Archana building. It has been spread over two terraces. And, dismantling and rejoining each parts of the DWR will consume a lot of time. It will take more than a year, then the radar will of no use,” KS Hoslikar, deputy director general at IMD told dna on Tuesday.
He said they have not yet received any written communication from the state government asking them to relocate the radar. “Once we receive it, then we will take up this matter with the higher authority,” said Hosalikar.
Another IMD official said there is no point relocating the radar from here. “After the July 2005, it was decided to set up a Doppler Weather Radar to give precise prediction of weather. Earlier, as per the state government suggestions, we had decided to install the Doppler Radar at Aarey Milk Colony in Goregaon. But that site was not suitable. Now, again we have to scout for a location,” he said, requesting anonymity.