Free Press Journal

Mumbai: BMC to build a Textile Museum in a heritage mill


In a ambitious project eight years ago Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) proposed a textile museum at Kalachowkie. Finally after being stuck in BMC’s pipe line for eight years, BMC will finally go ahead with the planning of the proposed textile museum at Kalachowkie. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will seek help from artists of the prestigious JJ School of Arts for preparing a plan of Mumbai’s Textile Museum.

The BMC will build this museum in India United Mills. The India United Mills is 10 acre land spread. The India United Mills 2 and 3 have been sanctioned as heritage structures and the entire plot as a heritage precinct. The plot has three ring and spinning structures, a chimney, a semi-automatic loom and a pond. Restoration work of some of the structures in the mill has already begun. For past eight years the land was surrounded by all sorts of controversies like from funding to non-approval of the plan by Maharashtra Heritage Conservation Committee (MHCC).

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The museum will consist a live functioning mini-textile mill, and ancillary activities like exhibition of textile-related activities, fabrics, machinery, processes, fashion shows, souvenir shops, other recreational activities such as cafeteria, spill-out zones, light and sound shows, public utility toilet blocks, etc. It will show a representation of the past chawl life and a museum celebrating the city’s mill legacy.

The state government approved this land request of BMC before civic body elections, while handing over the land to the BMC that state government had mentioned that the land under the heritage structures to be retained for textile museum shall be treated as part of the recreation ground share of the MCGM as a special case.

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As reported by Hindustan Times, BMC commissioner, Ajoy Mehta has expressed that the planning committee will make the museum interactive for public. All the heritage structures in the museum will be restored as they were before. There will be dedicated space for new graduates (painters to sculptors) who can rent the space for six months to one year. They can showcase their art or even sell it. But after the period of the rent is over the space will be given to a new graduate. The space will not be given to any boutique stores.