Mumbai Lens: Construction city

Mumbai city looks like one big dump and an eyesore these days. For the last few years or so, wherever one looks around in Mumbai, there is something being broken down or built or repaired. The list of construction activities happening in Mumbai right now is mind- boggling; in some places this work continues 24/7.

Road widening. Monorail. Metro rail. Flyovers. Elevated roads. Slum rehabilitation. Road repair. Skywalks. Redevelopment. New construction. Pedestrian subways. Laying pipelines. Railway platform extensions …


The noise and air pollution that all this construction activity has brought about — not to mention the ensuing traffic snarls and health problems — cannot just be described in words. The city looks forever coated in dust and grease and I would even go as far as to say that parts of city look like war relics !


Mumbai has the sobriquet of a city that never sleeps. But for once, I wish it all this construction activity would cease and the city sleep and let Mumbaikars sleep too. Mumbai is also referred to as Maximum City. But with the way it currently is,  I want to refer to it as Construction City !

It is an apt name, isn’t it? What would you call the city?

Mumbai Lens is a photographic series which, as the name suggests, is Mumbai-centric and is an attempt to capture the various moods of the city through my camera lens. For more posts in this series, please click here.

33 thoughts on “Mumbai Lens: Construction city

  1. How did you manage to click all these photos, Sudha? Yes, we see them everywhere, but there is scarcely any place to stand and click!!!! been wanting to click some of the monorail work near chembur station, but the place is so packed these days, i can barely walk! and where did u click that curved bridge? havent seen that yet…. and yes, the city is indeed looking like a ‘work in progress’ board.. and wonder when, if ever, all the work will be over, and we will get our roads back !! but about sleeping, well, i wonder… does anyone in this city (apart from a few of us) really want to sleep? the city is known for working round the clock, after all… its always ‘work in progress’ 😀


    1. All these pictures were taken with my cellphone camera, Anu. The first and the third photograph were taken from a cab and rickshaw, respectively. The second picture was taken as I walked past it. And as for what and where the bridge in the picture is, all I can say is wait and watch 🙂 A separate post coming up soon !

      Yes, Mumbai is a city in progress, a work in progress and all that. But will we ever get to see any real progress? I mean I have seen the city like this for at least 10 years and it is getting increasingly worse. Yes there is progress but only in more traffic jams, health problems, etc. 😦


  2. It does make moving about the city a nightmare. And the worst part is, by the time the flyover, bridge or road widening is complete, the traffic has increased that much making it all useless for they are already choked. Little planning for the future is done with the result whatever construction is dome becomes choked in a few years necessitating another cycle of construction. The constructions are indeed monstrous looking.


    1. I couldn’t help but nod my head as I was reading your comment. Many flyovers in Mumbai are proof of poor planning. At Mankhurd, a flyover had been built for traffic going out in the direction of Panvel and now they are building an addon flyover for traffic coming into Mumbai. One of the reasons that Mumbai has become construction city is because of poor planning and another reason is corruption.


    1. True, many cities and towns in India re undergoing major growth, but since most of it is unplanned or poorly executed, I doubt it it will ever reach completion. The monorail and metrorail projects in Mumbai are a case in point as they overshot deadlines many times.


    1. Thanks, though I feel that everything thing recorded is documenting change of some sort or the other. In spite of my irritation, I always live in hope that this will change for the better. Hopefully this will happen in my lifetime.


  3. If at the end it means that Mumbai will be easier to travel, it will be worth it. I remember some terrible times stuck in the traffic when it was still Bombay, so it must be much worse today. May be they need to learn from Delhi metro so that construction projects finish in time. 🙂


    1. In spite of the construction projects completed, traffic jams and other miseries abound. Often it takes 2 hours to reach the airport from my place in Navi Mumbai; the same time it takes me to get to Pune ! I wish we had someone like E. Sreedharan, who got the metro in Delhi moving and the effects of his work are being felt even today !


  4. I am curious to see the city after all this construction is over. I see a different and wonderful Mumbai thereafter. 🙂

    I hope all this current living with dust will be worth it !!


  5. Tell me about it, Sudha. And the continuous ‘road development’ that leads to so many diversions. It took us four hours to get from the end of the Expressway to Bandra this Wednesday!
    The perspective of your pictures are great – don’t those look like dragons? 🙂


    1. Ouch ! Four hours ? 😦

      Thanks to the Mankhurd flyover being extended, the normal 20 minute commute to work has suddenly doubled. And with the Panjrapole elevated road nearing a critical phase this commute time is only going to get extended !

      The pictures were lucky rather than planned captures. And yes, they do look like dragons 🙂


  6. I totally agree. All this construction and debris in addition to garbage piled up everywhere are simply super annoying. One longs for clean roads, and traffic that moves! But I don’t remember the last time when I have seen a (forgive my language) ‘constructionless’ Mumbai :(. If one flyover is opened, construction for another starts enroute and the time taken to reach ones destination remains the same! I dread to think what would have happened though if these projects were not completed.


    1. That’s true. Even I have never seen a constructionless Mumbai. But the levels it has reached now is unbelievable and unbearable. As for clean and clear roads and traffic that moves I hope that it will happen one day. Whether it will happen in my lifetime or not remains to be seen 🙂


  7. Bangalore is no better. There is construction of buildings, road widening, pipe laying and what not going on wherever you can look. 😦

    We have been looking for a house for my parents, and it has been a nightmare. Seriously.


    1. I know, TGND. I could not recognise Bangalore when I visited it last February. But trust me when I say that Mumbai is worse, several degrees worse. Parts of it actually look straight out of a war ravaged place.

      Have faith, hope and determination. You’ll find that house for your parents soon 🙂


    1. That’s true too. But sometimes hope stretches too thin, especially when all dust created due to the construction activity around makes you ill for a large part of the year and you have to be on medication.

      But yes, there is always hope and sometimes only hope.


  8. I am afraid I am suddenly unable tp open any of your mails fpr some reason which I do not understand. So although I would love to see them, as always, maybe you should stop wasting your time sending them, unless you can suggest anther way of accessng them. Thanks anyway and all the best for the New Year Ashraf


    1. Hello Ashraf,

      Happy New Year to you too !

      I’m really sorry that you are unable to open the email notifications. I don’t know why this is happening. You receive the email notification because you have subscribed to my blog. I’m afraid I cannot stop you from receiving the notifications. You will have to unsubscribe to my blog for this to take effect.


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