The Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road, known commonly as ‘JVLR’, is an important connecting road between Western Express Highway (WEH) and Eastern Express Highway (EEH), Mumbai. From a real estate perspective, it passes through some of the most lucrative suburbs, as they now stand, for urban housing and infrastructure. As someone who would travel to school via JVLR back in 2001, it was pretty easy to remember the long journeys that would bring about a lot of travel sickness. Uneasy, as the whole stretch from Mahakali Caves Road until IIT Gate and beyond was, would take hours at times to navigate. Serious redevelopment plans with efforts from institutional authorities, public servants and bureaucracy, and loans from World Bank helped in the construction and broadening of JVLR. As it happens, with just about every infrastructure project in India, the construction took longer than expected but has brought about positive changes to the Mumbai’s suburbs.
JVLR as it stands today, towards the fag end of 2015, is quite a different story. Gone are the days of ruthless traffic jams and long queues of cars, trucks and buses. To compare it between then and now, JVLR as a connecting road between Eastern and Western Express highway is of huge importance because the corridors around it have been transformed into mini-economies of sorts, with a large thrust to construction of residential housing.
JVLR hosts multiple avenues of economic activities, generated at places such as MIDC at SEEPZ, Powai, L&T, SMBs on Saki Vihar Road and near LBS marg, and SMB’s (Small and medium scale businesses) and industries in the adjacent corridors. There is a large population of urban middle-class settlers all along this stretch of road. The real estate sector around JVLR is changing rapidly, and is a growing reflection on the growth of human capital which it is able to generate and attract.
JVLR encompasses one of the earliest EPZs (Export Processing Zone) converted SEZs (Special Economic Zone) called ‘SEEPZ’ (Santacruz Electronics Export Processing Zone) spread across more than 110 acres, inaugurated way back in 1973 as an EPZ (India’s first was in 1965) . The present scenario has allowed for nearby areas to host many business parks all along Saki Naka, Chakala and Sher-e-Punjab and MIDC SEEPZ. The rebound effect is such that the whole area of Salsette Islands can now see structured efforts and real estate development by all the stakeholders in order to build an ecosystem of businesses, residences, commerce and leisure activities. The development of Salsette Islands began in different pockets at different times, in bits and pieces, but JVLR proposes the best mix as aforementioned. However, it must dawn upon those in real estate business that a concrete jungle and thriving businesses, attracts only a certain section of people.
Over time, as open land disappears without well-maintained open grounds, and other avenues, the crowd of potential customers will filter out many sections of people. A lack of certain necessary public amenities due to non-availability of land will invariably affect the real estate sector. Of course, there will be enough to keep the existing market thriving, but it will fail to produce the aura of a liveable neighborhood, legacy of which can live on for years and decades, if and when a real estate business decides to expand to other places. There will always be a demand for sports, arts and culture through open air amphitheaters, and grounds. A lack of it will attract people to projects in other areas that offer them avenues for such activities. Presence of such avenues is something the suburban part of Bombay lacks, something that the major section of house buyers could look at as well. Who knows how well potential consumers may react to such gestures done early on, before land availability constraints kick in.
JVLR is seeing integrated developments in the form of apartment complexes with various amenities as large plots of lands were acquired by leading builders such as Oberoi Realty, Hubtown, L&T, Kalpataru among others.
Hubtown Hillcrest, an upcoming property can be seen off JVLR near SEEPZ. Although, it is currently under construction, areas around its vicinity have long been held under ‘planned development’ but actual movement along the lines can be seen now.
A whole new real estate market is being developed here to cater to the increasing surge of office-goers along the JVLR which further leads to WEH. WEH connects through to BKC on one hand and established suburbs of Bandra and nearby areas of Santacruz and Vile Parle, which is also equidistant from SEEPZ via S.V Road and Linking Road. It also lets through to newer areas along the western line of suburban trains such as Goregoan, Malad, Kandivali and further. As a matter of fact, completion of Bandra-Worli sealink provided the much needed relief of easing one-way traffic on JVLR to Eastern Express Highway, subsequently allowing for better commute via WEH. JVLR passes through Powai, and beyond until Eastern Express Highway, which does make it easier to commute to South Bombay or Thane as well.
As one enters the JVLR from WEH, the area of Andheri (E) shows well-established urban housing and real estate properties that were established a long time ago, especially along the Mahakali Caves Road. A few new properties have been constructed in the recent past such as Kalpataru Estate on one side, while bang opposite to where once stood Fantasy Land Amusement Park (Great memories as a child) now has Oberoi’s Splendor and some more Oberoi properties coming up, such as Oberoi Prisma. As mentioned above, most of the mini-townships includes a clubhouse, and/or a swimming pool, well-built gardens, so on and so forth.
Oberoi Prisma is a real estate project next to Oberoi Splendour, overlooking the lush-green Aarey-Milk Colony, right off JVLR.
Properties near the Mahakali Caves Road off JVLR are in close proximity to many schools, and local markets, street shops and old residences and include various activities of leisure. These properties have an easy access to medical centers and hospitals, most notably to Seven Hills Hospital and Holy Spirit Hospital. There are a few established hospitals along the WEH such as the famous Lilavati Hospital in Bandra or Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital at Andheri West. It’s also home to numerous educational institutions such as Bombay Cambridge School, St. Dominic Savio High School, St. Xavier’s High School, Canossa High School, Tolani College of Commerce, Cambridge Junior College among others.
ACME Boulevard is an upcoming project off Mahakali Caves Road. The inside lanes are narrow but the property is in close proximity to JVLR, Chakala, Jogeshwari and Andheri’s Agarkar Chowk.
JVLR at the L&T junction is connected to Saki Naka and further to Kurla and beyond through Saki Vihar Road. It also stands there at the gates of Powai which has transformed into and economic and residential hub. For more on Powai’s growth, read here. Under construction Emerald Isle is one of the exciting upcoming properties on JVLR by L&T Realty and is located very close to L&T Junction.
By the time, one reaches LBS Marg further towards the eastern express on JVLR, it’s hard to not notice the new upcoming real estate markets of Bhandup and Mulund on one side and that of Vikhroli and Ghatkopar on the other. All the respective stations of these areas are in close distance.
Both the suburban railway network lines, of Harbor and Western, and Metro, connect with Andheri which is the station of preference for those living along JVLR very close to Andheri-Seepz, while Kanjurmarg, Vikhroli and Ghatkopar is frequently used for Central Line railway network. Godrej Platinum at Vikrholi, is an under construction property off Eastern Express Highway. Again the property isnt too far from JVLR’s turn along the EEH.
At LBS Marg, JVLR connects EEH and WEH bound traffic to developing areas of Vikhroli and Ghatokopar and that of Kanjurmarg, Bhandup, Mulund, and beyond. These areas have seen recent surge in real estate development as barren land and areas along the roads are being taken by private developers to provide alternatives to ever-increasing prices in markets such as Powai and Andheri.
Although, JVLR may still be crowded during peak hours, it is a big departure from the jam-packed roads of the past. It did change the topography of the place ever since, as many prominent shops and buildings were razed to give way to the road.
With ease of travelling due to better connectivity, prospective buyers are also looking at newly-developing areas where cost effectiveness is much better for properties of similar kinds.