Adani Recruits Global Team for Dharavi Revamp


Gautam adaniGautam Adani's collaboration with Mumbai's slum rehabilitation authority has enlisted an international team to reconstruct Dharavi, a significant move in renovating one of Asia's largest slums despite increasing resistance towards the initiative. Dharavi, approximately three-quarters the size of Central Park in New York, is a densely populated zone accommodating numerous impoverished families in confined spaces at the heart of India's financial hub. A considerable portion of its residents lacks basic amenities such as running water and hygienic sanitation facilities.

Reconstructing it poses a colossal challenge, an idea initially proposed back in the 1980s. In July, the Maharashtra state government sanctioned Adani's $619 million proposal to revamp the 625-acre (253-hectare) area, identified by officials as "the world's most extensive urban renewal endeavor".

The joint venture, Dharavi Redevelopment Project (DRPPL), disclosed its collaboration with architect Hafeez Contractor, renowned for numerous social housing projects, along with U.S. design firm Sasaki and UK-based consultancy firm Buro Happold for the redevelopment initiative. DRPPL was established in July, and the selection of this team gains significance amidst claims by a competing bidder that associates of Prime Minister Narendra Modi favored Adani, while local residents express concerns about Adani's capability to execute the project amid notable financial setbacks.

The Adani group has affirmed that the Dharavi project was acquired through a fair, transparent, and internationally competitive bidding process. Contrarily, the state government has refuted any allegations of misconduct. Demonstrators numbering in the thousands marched towards Adani's Mumbai offices last month, demonstrating their opposition to the conglomerate's redevelopment strategies.

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