The New Suburban Buzz In Mumbai

Suburbs like Goregaon and Powai have pipped Colaba as the preferred residential destination with its state-of-the-art affordable infrastructure and tranquil ambience

By Bruhadeeswaran R

The growth of the financial capital of the country has led to the emergence of new suburban areas like Goregaon and Powai, which offer the perks of a prime residential area at a cheaper rate. The affordable property and the alluring quiet in the areas have prompted residents from the elite but increasingly crowded neighbourhood of Colaba to relocate to these new suburbs.

The marked trend towards suburban settlement is not just to purchase affordable property, but also due to the advanced infrastructure it offers amidst vast spaces for an active lifestyle. Sudipta Lahiri, who has been living in a 2BHK flat in Powai with his family for the past 25 years agrees with the perks of the suburban life. “People want a healthy lifestyle and it is not too much to ask for space for an evening walk, jog, or do some gardening and roam freely in the neighbourhood. Powai is much greener than Colaba and you get property at almost half the rate than that of Colaba.” Contrary to Colaba, Powai also boasts of tremendous developments with modern state-of-the-art residential and commercial complexes being set up recently.

Some of the ongoing and upcoming projects include Suncity Mars, Shimmering Heights and Krishna Niwas by GHP group and Mayfair Symphony Spring (commercial).

Why Colaba is Becoming Quieter

Colaba is known for its ability to metamorphose; its multiple identities include that of a hippies’ backyard, an arts centre, a major football fan base, a remnant of the Colonial times, and as the ultimate shopping destination in the city for both expensive and affordable items. Its versatility has paved its image as an increasingly commercial hotspot. The Colaba Causeway is known for being a shopper’s haven but residents are miffed with the onslaught of traders and customers.

Asif Khan, an independent real estate professional from Colaba, says that many residents are moving out of Colaba and the commercial real estate boom is taking a toll on even those who have been living here for generations. “Since Colaba is a tourist destination for foreigners, there is no dearth of nightlife but there is a constraint of space. Residents, who want a peaceful and calm lifestyle, are moving out of Colaba by either selling or leasing it. The returns are good and planned residential suburbs like Goregaon and Powai are their preferred destinations.”

The only hassle for those moving out of Colaba will be extra travelling time to offices as commuters from Colaba have the advantage of moving against the peak hour traffic. However, Khan notes by leasing out the property for commercial purposes, the residents make some extra money and also, the rents in Powai and Goregaon are way lower compared to Colaba.

Apart from the presence of legendary film studios and wealthy neighbours, Goregaon is sparsely populated with tree-lined avenues that are relatively well maintained. Though new to the city, Suman Meena, a PR professional with her office headquartered at Nariman Point, travels almost four hours every day just for the comfort of a spacious house at an affordable price. “Goregaon is well connected with three bus depots and I board the fast local train to Churchgate, thus minimising the travel time. To reach my office, I have to use all three modes of transportation – bus, train and taxi. The locality is calm, safe and better. The cost is reasonably better than anywhere in South Mumbai.”

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