The Hanging Garden 〜 What's Hidden under the Green Roof
October 24, 2015
I visited The Hanging Garden in South Mumbai first time because the visit of this place was included in the city tour which I booked.
Geographically, this place is quite gorgeous.
A vast green terrace park on the top of the posh Malabar Hill peninsula which is located in one of the Southern edges of the city, East side faces Back Bay (to see Marine Drive’s famous “Queen’s Necklace” from Kamara Nerhu Park just across the road), West side faces Arabean Sea (to see beautiful sunset).
No wonder local people love having a walk there in the cooler morning or evening hours, out of crowd of the city
I enjoyed different vegetations, some were exotic, the park is also well known with its animail shape hedges. An agreeable open air space.
Though known rather as The Hanging Garden, it is called Ferozeshah Mehta Garden, named after a famous Parsi lawyer of British era.
Once I was there after dark.
I saw people was not bothered by darkness (very few street lamp in the garden), nor by the louder music floating from speakers --- Interesting !
I get used to a garden with some more lights, and especially, no speaker in this situation.....just a difference of perception.
Well, a beautiful garden itself --- for those who come from Europe, this is not something extordinary.
For example, here in Paris, municipal gardens are quite well maintained throughout the year, I appreciate a lot gardeners' job.
In fact, you are walking ON an extordinary place…..
Under your feet, there lays city’s water reservoir which supplies water to entire South Mumbai, so the Hanging Garden built in 1880 (and renovated in 1921) is its artistic and green roof.
In Mumbai, water supply is controlled by The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM)/ or, The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), who is responsible for urban infrastructure and administration in Greater Mumbai.
It is India's first municipal corporation established in 1882,
With its huge annual budget more than that of some of the small states of India, MCGM/BMC is one of the largest local governments in Asia.
MCGM/BMC Building next to CST station, Mumbai
Malabar Hill reservoir which lays under the Hanging Garden supplies water to most part of South Mumbai --- Fort, Churchgate, Colaba, Nariman Point, Marine Lines, Girgaum, Marine Drive, Malabar Hill, Napean Sea road, Peddar road and Nana Chowk...
In earlier time, water used to be supplied to tap directly and could not rise above 34' from ground level.
The fact that Malabar Hill reservoir flowed water from higher location allowed the buildings of the area to rise up to five to six floors at that time.
Private Water Tank in Nariman Point
From the master balancing reservoirs in the northern suburb, treated water is supplied to Mumbai through the 28 service reservoirs located all over the city.
As water flows by gravity, The Malabar Hill reservoir, which is located at the southern-most end of the water supply system, is always the worst affected by a water-shortage.
MCGM/BMC imposes partial water cuts according to supply capacity, but also provides water tanker with subsidised rates (less expensive than private tankers) for commercial buildings when required.
The cause of water shortage varys ; pipeline burst, power fluctuation at water treatment plant etc.
But water showtage in India depends heavily on monsoon rainfall every year.
As I visited Mumbai in February this year, it rained for two days, and Mumbaikers explained me that February rain was very rare.
I loved walking in the rain.
I stayed in Mumbai nearly one month over three visits (February and October), it was the only moment that I saw a drop of water fell from the sky in the city.
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