Mumbai: IIT Roorkee Recommends Repairing Malabar Hill Reservoir, BMC Plans Alternative Tank

Mumbai: IIT Roorkee Recommends Repairing Malabar Hill Reservoir, BMC Plans Alternative Tank

In its recent final report submitted to civic authorities, a team from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee concluded that the Malabar Hill Reservoir (MHR) can be repaired instead of being reconstructed. The report recommends constructing a new alternate tank to facilitate the repairs without disrupting water supply.

FPJ News ServiceUpdated: Monday, July 08, 2024, 05:17 PM IST
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Malabar Hill Reservoir | Vijay Gohil

Mumbai: In its recent final report submitted to civic authorities, a team from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee concluded that the Malabar Hill Reservoir (MHR) can be repaired instead of being reconstructed. The report recommends constructing a new alternate tank to facilitate the repairs without disrupting water supply.

Following their inspection of MHR in early June, experts from IIT Roorkee dismissed the need for reservoir reconstruction. The report, submitted to the BMC last week, emphasizes the importance of preparing an alternative water supply plan before initiating repairs.

"Prior to commencing repairs, we must have a contingency plan for water supply in place. Originally, the construction of a new tank would have impacted numerous fully grown trees in the vicinity. Our aim is to ensure that the construction of the alternative tank minimally affects the local greenery and gardens. Additionally, the expert team will provide a maintenance checklist for regular upkeep of the reservoir," stated a senior civic official.

Locals were up in arms against the project as it required the hacking of several fully grown trees for the reconstruction of the reservoir. The iconic Hanging Garden was also to be demolished for the project, which was strongly objected by the residents. So, after the intervention of guardian minister (suburbs) Mangal Prabhat Lodha, an eight member committee was formed to decide the fate of MHR in November 2023.

However, the panel got split into two groups – one from IIT-B and another from architects and citizen representatives; the BMC official being the neutral member. The two groups presented conflicting reports, creating deep confusion. To resolve the issue the BMC sought opinion from IIT Roorkee.

Meanwhile, in the first week of June, Lodha had announced that the original proposal of reconstruction of the reservoir will be scrapped. The century-old reservoir beneath the Hanging Garden supplies 147 million litres of water per day to south Mumbai. Its reconstruction and augmentation proposal was approved in February 2022 at an estimated cost of Rs 698 crore.

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