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Property in Mumbai

The Economist
Property in Mumbai - Mumbai - India - economics


IN THE minds of Mumbai residents, whether they sleep on streets or silk sheets, property developers loom large. In films and novels, skyscraper-erecting baddies bring wealth and renewal—and often misery and violence. Yet in reality, buildings do not loom as large as you might think in Mumbai.



Take the view from one of the towers clustered in midtown, owned by Abhisheck Lodha, a razor-sharp American-educated tycoon making billion-dollar bets on transforming the city. The odd skyscraper erupts out of low-rise clutter. There are pockets of tall buildings on old mill land and along the city’s west coast. But much of Mumbai—supposedly a rival to Hong Kong, London and New York—looks flat and knackered. To the east the vista is of derelict factories, rotting low-rise rent-controlled buildings and the odd slum. To the south lies the ossifying old city centre, with its ageing port, colonial showpieces and Soviet-style offices and bureaucrats’ flats. The nearest green spaces are a racecourse and a club on whose ample lawn members feed stray dogs buttered toast.

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