After MiD DAY’s report on how the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Market in Fort is running to seed structurally, authorities have woken up and decided to take measures to restore the ailing structure and arrest its further disintegration.
On July 12, MiD DAY reported (‘Why residents of crumbling structures won’t move out’) how occupants of 10 dilapidated buildings in the city had dug their heels in and refused to evacuate the buildings, citing lack of sound alternative accommodation.
The CSM Market, which mostly houses civic and governmental offices, was one of them.
The ground plus four-storey market complex, which has various BMC departmental offices from first to fourth floors, has suffered a lot of damages over time. And to avoid undertaking evacuation, the civic authorities have appointed M/S Shashank Mehendale & Associates to conduct surveys and make an inventory of the repairs that need to be undertaken and the methods that may be used.
The consultants recommended repairs on the whole of fourth floor -- all external chajjas (eaves) and staircases on the north side. For this, an audit report was prepared and submitted to Devidas Kshirsagar, assistant commissioner of BMC ward A under which the market falls.
When MiD DAY had visited the building on July 11, we saw that many chajjas had either fallen off or were crumbling. The building’s interiors were in a similar state, the walls of the staircase were cracked and had chipped off in bits, and wooden logs supported the staircases to bolster the ceiling and the floor above.
A senior BMC officer said on request of anonymity, “The repairs had to be planned urgently as the building is in bad shape. Since we don’t want to incur any losses, it is better to repair the building while it is repairable. The papers are ready and the work will start soon once the contract is awarded.”
The building already sports bamboo scaffoldings and some minor works have begun. The complete overhaul will follow the building proposal department’s nod.
Rahul Shewale, BMC’s standing committee chairman, said, “Considering the building is a threat to the well being of employees working there, it was important that the building be repaired soon. The papers are currently with the building proposal department and the repair work will be started soon.”