Mumbai: 16-storey apartments to accommodate 28,000 civic cleaners

Published: Jun 04, 2019, 08:35 IST | Chetna Yerunkar

The existing quarters accommodate just 5,000 staff as the buildings are only three- and four-storey

Mumbai: 16-storey apartments to accommodate 28,000 civic cleaners
The staff quarters, which are under construction, at Cochin Street. PIC/ BIPIN KOKATE

The civic body is working on a project to increase the number of flats for the safai kamgars (cleaning workers) so that those living on rent at present can also be allocated official accommodation.

BMC has as many as 28,000 cleaners but only 5,000 of them live in the staff quarters.

The 5,000 cleaning workers currently live in 39 three- and four-storey apartment buildings spread across the city. The BMC plans to demolish these buildings, most of which are in poor condition, and construct 16-storey buildings.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner, during a review meeting last week with different department heads and ward officers, instructed the Solid Waste Management (SWM) department to submit a proposal within 15 days to redevelop the 39 buildings.

The BMC officials said the new flats will be 260 square feet each — bigger than the size of their current quarters. The project will begin in phases and the worst dilapidated buildings will be redeveloped first, said the officials.

Meanwhile, another project for the construction of staff quarters for SWM employees is underway at Cochin Street at Ballard Estate. However, these are only four- and five-storey building, comprising 142 flats. The construction of 86 flats is complete and work to build the rest is underway.

Ashok Khaire, deputy municipal commissioner (SWM), "With this redevelopment we will be able to accommodate our employees closer to work, as currently, they have to travel from far off places. During the construction of the new building, we will give the existing residents an in-transit accommodation so they don’t have to move anywhere else."

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