Community Led Development of Slums in Mumbai - Need of the hour

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Submission Summary
Mumbai’s vision of a ‘Slum Free’ city calls for a shift from the currently prevalent ‘developer driven’ to a ‘community led’ redevelopment process. The developer led market driven model, wherein the sale of housing units in the open market helps cross subsidisation of free units for the slum dwellers, has led to the creation of vertical slums, a compromise on the socio-economic fabric of slum communities. The population of Mumbai is 9.35 million, of which 4.62 million live in slums. The Government of Maharashtra established the Slum Redevelopment Authority (SRA) in 1997 to address the redevelopment of slums in the state. The SRA scheme facilitates the redevelopment of slums through the concept of land-sharing, where open sale of housing units in the market allows the cross-subsidising of free units for the slum dwellers. However, the full authority and discretion on decisions concerning the quality of construction lies in the hands of private developers. Driven by profit margins, developers use upto 75% of the available land to build units that they can sell, while forcing the existing slum dwellers into the remaining 25%, transforming horizontal slums to vertical ones in the name of high-rise development. The rehabilitation provides free units to the slum dwellers. Whilst families have got free homes, they have had to sacrifice ventilation, daylight, social spaces, open spaces, and safety, leading to very unhygienic conditions and unsustainable communities. Alternatively, slum dwellers can collectively organise themselves to take the responsibility of redevelopment, with the help of the state government, local authorities, financial institutions, NGOs and professionals to design and manage their project. They can themselves lead the efforts to improve their overall standard of living from the physical, social as well as the economic perspective. The Architect proposes a model to help the slum communities lay claim to their right of living as dignified residents of the city, through such a self-focused, community-oriented approach. Each slum community is unique in terms of their needs & aspirations. The Architect suggests adopting a democratic process in identifying the highest aspirations of the slum dwellers, in ensuring societal empowerment & equality for all. A community workshop shall aid to capture every member's needs, prioritizing them using the 80/20 principle & a voting system. Thus, deriving a design brief unique to each community. The architecture design of these Community-Led Developments will focus on creating spaces that foster community interactions from a macro to a micro level. The overall density of the developments will be 30% lesser than SRA Scheme Developments while offering increased unit sizes, improved living conditions, ample natural light and ventilation, safety, an equal share of open spaces, social amenities, quality construction with low maintenance costs and individual development. This kind of power to Slum Redevelopment can only be given by the government to the people of the slums for a boost in their lifestyle. Instead of handing over pockets of slums to builders, government support for a community-led approach will ensure the successful upliftment of slums in Mumbai. KEYWORDS : Community Development, Slums, Mumbai, Slum redevelopment, Affordable housing, Sustainable community The following are a few references for our study: 1. Hindman, Michelle, Olivia Lu-Hill, Sean Murphy, Sneha Rao, Yash Shah, and Zequi Zhu. 2015. “Addressing Slum Redevelopment Issues in India.” Dow Sustainability Fellowship 2015. 2. Menon, Madhusushan. n.d. Opportunities And Challenges In Housing The Economically Weaker Sections Of The Society. Accessed 2021. 3. P.K.Das Associates. 2012. Open Mumbai Re-envisioning the city & its open spaces. Mumbai: P.K.Das. 4. Slum Rehabilitation Authority, Maharashtra. n.d. “List Wise SRA Schemes.” Projects. Accessed 2020.
Submission ID :
ISO521
Submission Type
Submission Track
1: Inclusiveness and empowerment. Al-Majlis: planning with and for communities
Partner and Principal Architect
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IMK Architects
Design Director
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IMK Architects
Architect
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IMK Architects
Architect
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IMK Architects

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