On a rainy Saturday afternoon, when people were heading to restaurants, coffee shops and lounge bars at Phoenix Mills, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) began its drive of removing encroachments in the area.
The BMC demolishes illegal extensions of eateries at Phoenix Mills. Pic/Satej Shinde
Sources said this action comes in the wake of the fire-related incidents at shops, hotels and restaurants.
The authorities said that the first round of demolition began after an inspection was made inside all the restaurants and commercial spaces inside Phoenix Mills. On July 2, the BMC partly demolished at least three restaurants which had used open spaces not allotted to them officially by the civic body.
“Their extensions had encroached upon open spaces. We demolished these illegal extensions of Big Kahuna, Starbucks and Café Moshe's. We also intimated the Phoenix Mills administration which was conducting a football event in the open space right at its centre,” said Bhagyashree Kapse, Assistant Municipal Comm-issioner (G/ South ward).
BMC officials said around 15-20 people inspected various shops including a coffee and sandwich shop near the mall escalator. Officials said the management at the two places had necessary permission from the Building Proposal department, but were told that it’s not advisable to have a shop right next to the escalator. Officials said their demolition drive will intensify on Monday and they will look at offices in Kamala Mills.
While Phoenix Mills did not want to comment on the issue, management at Big Kahuna and Starbucks did not respond to our messages.