The civil aviation committee of the civil aviation ministry has recently ruled that the sanctioned height of a building in Bandra’s upscale Pali Hill cannot be higher than 92m and has asked that the height of the tower be reduced from 106m to 92m.
As per a report by the Times Of India, nearly 70 buildings near the airport have been told to reduce the height of their buildings by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).
After the orders Navroze Cooperative Housing Society was demolished, which has come as a shock to its residents and the builders Kryshnajay Developers. The Builder has challenged the decision in the Bombay high Court, saying that the decision was detrimental to him economically as he was planning to re-house his tenants in the lower floor and sell the higher floors.
The building is closest to the Mumbai Airport’s run way (about 3.25km away). The other two buildings closest to the runway are Sandhu palace and Anil Ambani’s new residence – which have been cleared when the UPA government was in power.
In a statement to TOI, builder Ajay Ashar, who is partnering with Kishor Bajaj of Badasaab Group on the tower, said, "We started work after civil aviation authorities in Delhi cleared a height of 106m (19 floors). But the expert committee, constituted in 2015, rejected the earlier permission and drastically reduced the height." Currently the building has reached a height of 28m. Incidentally, the Mumbai Aviation committee had earlier cleared a height of 56.9m.
"Now, suddenly airport authorities want to change the norms. This has badly affected ongoing projects," Said project's architect, Manoj Daisaria. Due to the government’s move, Navroze society issued a statement to their residents that the builder was, "not interested in the ongoing project anymore". "They may stop construction work any moment and also intend to stop rental payments of members with immediate effect."
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The builder on the other hand said that they are willing to accommodate all 24 members in the new towers and will absorb the losses. "We will absorb the loss and redesign the building," said Ashar. He said the sale flats on the top floors will be moved to a lower level and overlook Pali Hill Road. "We will have to reduce the price of these flats by at least 30% because they will no longer command a sea-facing premium." He said.
Navroze was built in the 1970s when Pali Hill had largely only bunglows. In 2012 the society signed a redevelopment agreement in which they were to get 40% more space. Each of the 24 members have also been given a corpus fund of 11 crores and are paid monthly rentals of 1.08 lakhs till the tower is completed.