The BMC improvement committee approved a proposal for exchanging plots with the trust executing the Bhendi Bazaar cluster redevelopment project on Saturday, clearing the way for implementing the project.
The project under the Saifee Burhani Upliftment Trust (SBUT) is to come up in an area of 16.5 acres, and the trust has been working on it since July 22, 2011. But the BMC owns 23 plots (measuring 4641.71 sq m) scattered over the stretch that is to be redeveloped. The BMC plots are reserved for commercial purposes, and the two SBUT plots are for residential facilities.
The proposal will now be put before the BMC general body for approval. The plots belonging to the civic body are in areas like Parel Road (south) and Sandhurst Road (east) while the trust-owned plots are along the Maulana Azad Marg in Bhuleshwar and Babula Tank Road in Mandvi.
"The project was facing a roadblock as SBUT did not have contiguous plots. Hence, the trust on January 16, 2013 offered to exchange two of its plots. The municipal norms allow such exchanges and hence we permitted the deal to go ahead," said Ram Barot, chairman of the improvement committee.
In addition to the two plots, which measure more than the total size of the plots the BMC will hand over to the trust, the civic body will also get money based on ready reckoner rate of the land offered.
"While making the deal, we had laid a condition that the plots the trust was offering us was something that we would be able to develop, are not reserved, and are located within one-km periphery of the BMC land. The valuation of these plots has not yet been done, however," a senior civic official said.
The trust will, in the meantime, have to pay BMC 50 per cent of the value of the land (based on ready reckoner rate) it plans to exchange with the corporation, the official added.
Despite repeated attempts, Abbas Master, CEO of SBUT, could not be reached for his comments.
Once the redevelopment is completed, the project will provide housing facilities to 3,200 families and 1,300 tenants, who are now staying in the building that are over 100 years old.
The total size of the plots SBUT wants BMC to hand over: 4,641.71 sq m.
The total size of the two plots SBUT wants to exchange with BMC: 5,547.49 sq m.