The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has started searching for a suitable location for the Mumbai Eye project, other than Bandra Reclamation.
Earlier in May 2023, the MMRDA had floated a request for proposal (RFP) to appoint a project consultant to help the authority carry out technical feasibility study and manage the bid process for selection of the developer.
To this end, the MMRDA has now asked the consultant to find and analyse alternate location for the project.
The corrigendum issued by the MMRDA on 29 May reads: “In addition-to the site specified in the RFP i.e. Bandra Reclamation, other sites such as MBPT area, MTHL landing area on Mumbai side, Aarey Colony etc.or any other sites suggested by MMRDA will be studied for suitability and feasibility for locating the Mumbai Eye.For the said identified location also, the Consultant shall carry out study on traffic impact and environment assessment as indicated.”
The decision to scout for a new location was made after local residents, accompanied by BJP MLA Ashish Shelar approached MMRDA to demand that the proposed facility be moved out of Bandra Reclamation due to traffic congestion fears.
They even suggested alternate sites in non-residential areas such as Mumbai Port Trust, Bandra-Kurla Complex and Ballard Estate.
It is worth mentioning that Bandra Reclamation is an affluent neighborhood situated near the city’s renowned Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL). The captivating sea view serves as a major allure for Bollywood celebrities, attracting them to reside in several buildings within the locality.
On Lines Of The London Eye
The ‘Mumbai Eye’ — Giant Observation Wheel, envisaged on the lines of the London Eye, has been envisaged to provide views of the city’s picturesque skyline, the Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL), of the Arabian Sea till its horizon and of the upcoming Ambedkar’s Statue of Equality.
Once operational, the ‘Mumbai Eye’ is envisaged to provide a change to the city’s tourism scenario and become an icon of the city’s progress.
At 135-metre, the London Eye is the world’s tallest cantilevered observation wheel; a feat of design and engineering it has become the modern symbol representing the capital and a global icon. The experience showcases breathtaking 360-degree views of the capital and its famous landmarks and has been the number one visitor experience in the city for the past decade.
“Once operational, it is expected to boost tourism in Mumbai and the whole of Maharashtra. It will help to generate employment and create iconic waterfront development. The Mumbai Eye shall attract global attention and pride for the whole country,” read the RFP.
Earlier in 2020, the Uddhav Thackeray-led state government had revived its 13-year-old plan to construct the Mumbai Eye as a major tourist attraction. Following this, the MMRDA had floated a tender for expression of interest (EOI) in which 23 bidders across the globe had expressed interest.
However, the bidders raised concerns over the proposed site for development.
It was in 2006, when the then Shiv-Sena led Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), for the first time, made budgetary provisions for the construction of a 630-foot Mumbai Eye. But the plan was shelved by the BMC, which was facing financial constraints at the time.
In 2011, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation revived the plan and proposed to construct it on public-private-partnership model. This, too, failed to take off.