Real Estate in Ulwe, Mumbai

Ulwe was touted as the most desirable real estate destination by Knight Frank in July 2014. Such a bullish report was followed by many other notes on real estate of Mumbai. In all these years of living in Mumbai I had never heard the word Ulwe or known of its existent.

CBD Belapur – A centrally located housing destination in Navi Mumbai

Last updated on January 25, 2017 by Manish Kumar

The city of Navi Mumbai was planned to relieve the immense pressure on the infrastructure of the island city of Mumbai, owing to its rapidly increasing population. Navi Mumbai was built by the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) in the form of various nodes, which were population and commercial centers, connected to each other by roads and the suburban railway network. Among the first of these nodes to gain prominence was the Central Business District of Belapur (CBD Belapur), owing to the large number of commercial establishments setting up here. Belapur has since gone from strength to strength and houses numerous offices and educational institutions. The numerous employment opportunities have also given a boost to housing in this node. In this article, we assess CBD Belapur as a real estate hotspot. Location CBD Belapur lies between the nodes of Kharghar and Seawoods/Nerul in Navi Mumbai. It is bound by …

CBD Belapur – A centrally located housing destination in Navi Mumbai

The city of Navi Mumbai was planned to relieve the immense pressure on the infrastructure of the island city of Mumbai, owing to its rapidly increasing population. Navi Mumbai was built by the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) in the form of various nodes, which were population and commercial centers, connected to each other by roads and the suburban railway network. Among the first of these nodes to gain prominence was the Central Business District of Belapur (CBD Belapur), owing to the large number of commercial establishments setting up here.

Belapur has since gone from strength to strength and houses numerous offices and educational institutions. The numerous employment opportunities have also given a boost to housing in this node. In this article, we assess CBD Belapur as a real estate hotspot.

Location

CBD Belapur lies between the nodes of Kharghar and Seawoods/Nerul in Navi Mumbai. It is bound by the arterial Sion-Panvel highway and Palm Beach Road and by the natural formations of the Parsik Hill (which has a temple and a vipassana center at the top) and Panvel Creek. A road across this creek connects Belapur to Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) in Nhava-Sheva.

CBD Belapur is among the biggest business and commercial hubs of Navi Mumbai and is host to a number of government and private establishments. The headquarters of CIDCO and Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) are located here, as are numerous state and central government offices. Many banks, including the Reserve Bank of India, SBI, PNB have large establishments here and so do many BPO firms, among others.

Belapur can be easily reached from other business and industrial centers such as Vashi, Airoli, Kopar Khairane, MIDC Taloja etc. Much of the housing demand in Belapur comes from people working in all these aforementioned locations, who seek convenience in terms of accessibility and reduced travel time from their homes to their workplaces.

Connectivity

Belapur boasts of excellent connectivity, linked not just to other parts of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), but to other cities in Maharashtra and beyond. This is largely due to its location on the Sion-Panvel Highway, which going forward leads to the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, Mumbai-Goa and Mumbai-Bangalore highways. Navi Mumbai’s other arterial road, Palm Beach Road, begins from Belapur and connects it to other nodes such as Vashi, Nerul and Kopar Khairane. CBD Belapur is connected by a large number of BEST and NMMT buses to Mumbai, Panvel, Kalyan and other nodes of Navi Mumbai.

In addition, CBD Belapur lies on the Harbour line of Mumbai suburban railway, with regular local trains providing an inexpensive travel option. In addition, the under-construction Seawoods-Uran line will connect Belapur to JNPT by rail as well. CBD Belapur will also be the starting point of the Navi Mumbai Metro, connecting it to Kharghar, Taloja, Khandeshwar and the upcoming Navi Mumbai International Airport.

CBD Belapur railway station
CBD Belapur railway station

This airport will come up near Ulwe, which is just across the Panvel Creek from Belapur. The Trans-Harbour Link, from JNPT to south Mumbai, will bring down travel time from Belapur to the heart of Mumbai sharply. All these developments are likely to boost employment opportunities and see a heavy rise in housing demand in Belapur, as well as Ulwe.

Social Conveniences

CBD Belapur is not just a commercial district, but also a major educational center. It has numerous good schools such as Radcliffe School, Bharati Vidyapeeth High School, Vidya Prasarak High School and MES Vidya Mandir. A number of prestigious higher educational institutions have their campus in Belapur, such as the Indian Institute of Management Indore (Mumbai Campus), Institute of Company Secretaries of India, Apeejay Institute of Hospitality and BP Marine Academy.

Mahaavir Icon building in CBD Belapur, which houses IIM Indore (Mumbai campus)
Mahaavir Icon building in CBD Belapur, which houses IIM Indore (Mumbai campus)

When it comes to medical care too, Belapur has famous names such as Apollo Hospital and MGM Hospital and Research Centre. Belapur is not short on malls and shopping centres either, the V Times Square Mall and Bhoomi Mall being the most prominent. A plethora of restaurants, catering to different budgets and taste buds, dot the landscape of Belapur. Clearly, Belapur does not lack on any of the necessities, supporting a comfortable life.

High end housing destination

As can be expected from a centrally located commercial hub having excellent connectivity and social amenities, Belapur is a high end housing destination. The average price for a multistory apartment in Belapur is ~Rs. 10,650/sq. ft., which is significantly higher than Kharghar or Panvel, though lower than Nerul and Vashi. Should one wish to rent an apartment in Belapur, one will need to shell out a significant amount, the average base rate being Rs. 23/sq. ft.

For investors or home buyers looking for a better deal, Ulwe is an interesting option. With average property prices at ~Rs. 6000/sq. ft., one can get an affordable home or invest in a property likely to give good returns in the near future, with the aforementioned airport and Trans-Harbour link projects coming up. Rentals too are a fraction of that of Belapur, at an average base rate of Rs. 7/sq. ft.

Upcoming projects

Bhairaav Signature by the Bhairaav Group is an upcoming project located just below the Parsik Hill in Belapur. This project offers 2 and 3 BHK luxury homes, along with amenities such as a jogging track, gymnasium, party lawn with gazebo and a kids’ play area.

Bhairaav Signature in CBD Belapur
Bhairaav Signature in CBD Belapur

Another upcoming project is Gopal Krishna by Sonal Dev-Con. This is a single building project, with spacious 2 (1200 sq. ft.) and 3 BHK (1725 sq. ft.) apartments. Amenities provided include a swimming pool, gymnasium and landscaped garden.

Gopal Krishna in CBD Belapur
Gopal Krishna in CBD Belapur

Conclusion

CBD Belapur has the right mix of good connectivity, a plethora of commercial centers and offices, numerous amenities and a convenient location, which is why homes here come with a significant price tag. With the upcoming airport and a major port nearby, one can expect a significant uptick in property prices here as well as in Ulwe. For commercial real estate spaces, Belapur clearly remains much sought after and shall continue to do so.




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Ulwe: A Planned Town In Much Need For Infrastructure Story to Play Out

Last updated on October 16, 2015 by Ashish Mahajan

Whether it is stocks or real estate the big multipliers are earned by those who can expect the unexpected. Ulwe was touted as the most desirable real estate destination by Knight Frank in July 2014. Such a bullish report was followed by many other notes on real estate of Mumbai. In all these years of living in Mumbai I had never heard the word Ulwe or known of its existent. Though I had heard of the plans to build Navi Mumbai Airport (to decongest the current Santa Cruz airport) and Trans Harbour link to connect Nhava Sheva to mainland at Sewri. I just googled it up for the Navi Mumbai Airport and found that it was envisaged in the year 1997 and CIDCO is its nodal agency. We are in 2015 when it is expected that the construction will begin for the phase I of the airport. The same news …

Ulwe: A Planned Town In Much Need For Infrastructure Story to Play Out

Whether it is stocks or real estate the big multipliers are earned by those who can expect the unexpected. Ulwe was touted as the most desirable real estate destination by Knight Frank in July 2014. Such a bullish report was followed by many other notes on real estate of Mumbai. In all these years of living in Mumbai I had never heard the word Ulwe or known of its existent. Though I had heard of the plans to build Navi Mumbai Airport (to decongest the current Santa Cruz airport) and Trans Harbour link to connect Nhava Sheva to mainland at Sewri.

IMG_20151011_153816

I just googled it up for the Navi Mumbai Airport and found that it was envisaged in the year 1997 and CIDCO is its nodal agency. We are in 2015 when it is expected that the construction will begin for the phase I of the airport. The same news says first phase of the airport may be operational by 2019. On a lazy Sunday the spirited me left for Ulwe and understand the dynamics of the area. There is both good and bad news for those who track Mumbai real estate in this report.

Entering Ulwe from the Seawoods-Uran Road
Entering Ulwe from the Seawoods-Uran Road

The first good news, Ulwe isn’t that far from the mainland. One can access Ulwe through the Palm Beach road and turn towards Uran at NMMC Head Office (same turn where on other direction lies the Mayor’s Bungalow). It is about 10 km from this turn and some areas of Ulwe might just be closer. One crosses the Panvel creek through a very nicely lain road to Ulwe. On our way towards Ulwe we noticed a nice blue hoarding displaying a left towards the Navi Mumbai Airport. The curious souls that we were we took the turn and passed through a narrow village road in search of the upcoming airport. While a few dumper trucks crossed us we were hoping we will reach the construction site but for ten minutes we were only driving through villages with several State Roadways buses to Ulwe crossing us. At one point we saw a bunch of village women and we asked them for the directions to the airport and they said “sahib iderich he” (this land also is for airport)!!!

IMG_20151011_161856

We continued driving till a friend was prompted for nature’s call, as he got down the car a villager was passing by and we asked him where the airport site was and he said, all this is airport land. This is when we were taken aback by the reality and the reasons this project has been stuck for years. We were facing the mangroves which will be reclaimed to develop the airport. The idea is to have an airport such as the one at Hong Kong, built on reclaimed land. Two rivers Ulwe and Gadhi will need to be diverted and some 20 sq km of mangroves will have to be destroyed to build the much needed alternative to Chattrapati Shivaji International Airport of Mumbai. This is the bone of contention which has prevented development of the airport to date as Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) has objected to the development, though other alternatives have not found any audience as well. While the internet stories say the airport construction must begin anytime now we don’t see any activity at the site.

Construction at properties in Ulwe
Construction at properties in Ulwe

Then we turned back towards Ulwe and investigated the town. Our first impression of Ulwe was a village being developed into a suburb to Mumbai. Most buildings we could see were 3-4 storeys tall. The roads and plots were all dug up for development. The key to Mumbai commute i.e. its suburban railways wasn’t yet in Ulwe. The bus depot looked small and unkempt. Then we saw the under construction Uran-Ulwe-Seawoods railway line.

Essentially Ulwe has 3 infrastructure stories to talk about –

  1. Railways connectivity to Harbour line of Mumbai rail network (under construction)
  2. Navi Mumbai International Airport (yet to be constructed)
  3. Trans Harbour Link from Mainland (yet to be constructed)

Reliance Industries acquired a large tract of land Ulwe for purposes of SEZ and this land is along the sea. Currently it is well guarded by a boundary wall. As has been the fate with numerous SEZs in the country this didn’t take off either. If one talks to builders and brokers in Ulwe they all say currently the houses being constructed here have a frontage to the sea but once Reliance starts its activities that sea view might be lost. However any work on Reliance site itself is sometime away. However builders are quoting anywhere from INR 5000-7000 per sq ft for apartments. These numbers surprised us as Panvel which is a well connected suburb and is densely populated is available for INR 5000-6000 per sq ft in new projects. One may argue Panvel is farther away and Ulwe is in close proximity to Seawoods hence highly priced, but Ulwe story is linked to too many “ifs”.

IMG_20151011_163001
Office buildings of ONGC on Reliance land

Seawoods properties are priced at INR 12,000 and upwards while Ulwe is about half that price. However Ulwe isn’t Seawoods yet and  might not ever be. Though Ulwe is a much needed planned suburb to Mumbai and if the airport project does kick off it can be good news to investors in Ulwe.

NRI Complex-Seawoods as seen from Ulwe
NRI Complex-Seawoods as seen from Ulwe



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