Maximum Slum
Posted online: Sunday, September 24, 2006 at 0000 hrs Print Email

Not glossy catalogues of Valentino and Fendi in leather “boutiques”. Not
even precise ripoffs of their designs, too expensive for local retail
stores, that Dharavi’s sweatshops manufacture for offshore markets in
Dubai and South Africa. For, what’s Made in Dharavi could be designed in
Italy or France.

Asia’s largest slum—a tag that refuses to go away although the
shanty-sprawl is now pockmarked with numerous clusters of tightly
packed-in apartment complexes and even a pair of under-construction
16-storey “towers”—is more upwardly mobile than ever before. The state
government will, very soon, request Expressions of Interest from global
big daddies of construction to participate in the Dharavi Redevelopment
Project (DRP), an ambitious Rs 10,000-crore plan and part of Mumbai’s
belated makeover scheme.

cont'd....
http://www.indianexpress.com/sunday/story/13294.html


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Farah Baria
Posted online: Sunday, September 24, 2006 at 0000 hrs Print Email

SIXTY Foot is an odd name for a road, but not in Dharavi, Asia’s largest
slum. It was hastily slapped together to mark Rajiv Gandhi’s visit in
1985, and the width so impressed the locals that the new thoroughfare
came to be known by its dimensions. No one has cared to baptise it
otherwise.

For Mumbai, 60-Foot Road is just another slovenly street, flanked by a
row of tinpot skyscrapers. But in the gullies of Dharavi, it is a
fashionable address, the Mecca of aspiring millions.

cont'd....
http://www.indianexpress.com/sunday/story/13295.html

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| and,

Business Week has a short interview with Stewart Brand, whose recent
research is focused on how the world's squatter cities are serving as
centers of entrepreneurship and innovative design. The bulk of his
message, (of which he has presented in numerous city conferences
entitled ‘City Planet’, and is revealed in a long piece he published in
a recent issue of Strategy + Business), in essence, describes the
incredible pace of change facing the planet undergoing
hyper-urbanization, and how cities reveal an evolutionary societal
spirit in terms of the ways nature and civilization have - and go on -
mutually shaping one another through out history.

cont'd....
http://subtopia.blogspot.com/2006/09/squatter-mimicry.html