Vashi – Navi Mumbai’s gateway and premium housing location

Last updated on January 26, 2017 by Manish Kumar

The popular node of Vashi is considered to be among the best (if not the best) areas to reside in Navi Mumbai. As the title of this article suggests, Vashi is not only the first node one encounters if one crosses over the Thane Creek from Chembur/Mankhurd, it is also an apt representation of the planning and intent behind the construction of Navi Mumbai, which was to reduce the population pressure on Mumbai by offering opportunities and a standard of living comparable to, if not better than, the island city. Vashi is among the most developed areas not just in Navi Mumbai, but the entire Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). Owing to its proximity to Mumbai, it attracted huge demand from home buyers and saw plenty of property price appreciation as a result. This node, till date, remains the most sought-after residential destination in Navi Mumbai and we look at the …

Vashi – Navi Mumbai’s gateway and premium housing location

The popular node of Vashi is considered to be among the best (if not the best) areas to reside in Navi Mumbai. As the title of this article suggests, Vashi is not only the first node one encounters if one crosses over the Thane Creek from Chembur/Mankhurd, it is also an apt representation of the planning and intent behind the construction of Navi Mumbai, which was to reduce the population pressure on Mumbai by offering opportunities and a standard of living comparable to, if not better than, the island city.

Vashi is among the most developed areas not just in Navi Mumbai, but the entire Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). Owing to its proximity to Mumbai, it attracted huge demand from home buyers and saw plenty of property price appreciation as a result. This node, till date, remains the most sought-after residential destination in Navi Mumbai and we look at the factors that make it so in this article.

Location

Vashi is bounded by the nodes of Sanpada, Turbhe and Kopar Khairane from three sides and the Thane Creek on the fourth. Covering a large land area, this node is sub-divided into 31 sectors. The key contributor toward its initial development was the road and railway bridges across the Creek, which connects it to the areas of Mankhurd, Chembur and Ghatkopar in Mumbai, all of which can be reached in around 15-25 minutes from here.

Vashi, along with CBD Belapur, is among the biggest business districts in Navi Mumbai and is home to numerous commercial establishments, from small businesses to branded stores and IT firms. It can be called the IT centre of Navi Mumbai, with IT parks such as Haware Infotech Park and International Infotech Park located here. In addition, it can be conveniently reached from all parts of Navi Mumbai and beyond, as well as from Mumbai and attracts housing demand from all these areas. The industrial areas of Turbhe, Kopar Khairane, Pawane, Mahape, Taloja and the IT hub of Airoli are all easily reachable from here.

IT parks in Vashi
IT parks in Vashi

Connectivity

Probably, the biggest reason for Vashi’s attractiveness as a residential and commercial destination is its excellent connectivity. Vashi (and Airoli) are the only two nodes directly connected to Mumbai. All the major arterial roads of Navi Mumbai i.e. Palm Beach road, Sion-Panvel Highway and Thane-Belapur road pass through the node. Another major thoroughfare in this node is Vashi Road.

Each of these roads are well-served by BEST and NMMT buses, connecting this node to various areas of Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Kalyan and Panvel. Internal connectivity is by the numerous auto-rickshaws and by residents’ private vehicles. Most roads are in good condition, inspite of the heavy rains it receives during the monsoon. It is also a major pick-up and drop point for outstation buses to cities such as Pune, Aurangabad and Kolhapur in Maharashtra as well as to Hyderabad, Bangalore and the state of Goa.

Mini Seashore in Vashi
Mini Seashore in Vashi

Vashi lies on both the Mankhurd-Panvel as well as the Thane-Vashi corridors of the Harbour Line of Mumbai’s suburban railway system and residents can reach Thane, Panvel, Andheri (Mumbai airport) and south Mumbai within 40 minutes to 1 hour from here. It doesn’t serve outstation trains, however and residents need to travel to stations such as CST, Dadar, Kurla, Thane or Panvel for the purpose.

The Navi Mumbai International airport, which is to come up near Kharghar and Mansarovar, as well as the Trans-Harbour Link (road connecting JNPT in Nhava-Sheva to Mumbai Harbour) promise to transform Navi Mumbai into a major economic, logistics and transportation engine of the country and Vashi is well-poised to reap the rewards, with a rise in demand for both residential as well as commercial real estate expected.

Social Conveniences

Vashi was among the earliest nodes to be developed by the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) and the layout of the node highlights the same. Each sector was built for a certain purpose, whether residential, commercial, logistics or recreation. Most residential sectors are well-equipped with gardens and recreational areas. The Mini Seashore and Sagar Vihar are popular recreational and exercise haunts for residents. Residents can also enjoy various exhibitions and events, held at the humungous Convention and Exhibition Centre, as well as cultural performances at the Vishnudas Bhave Natyagruha.

Vashi Convention and Exhibition Centre
Vashi Convention and Exhibition Centre

Vashi, with its large cosmopolitan population, has attracted a number of reputed service providers in various spheres. It has a number of reputed schools such as Avalon Heights International School, Fr. Agnel Multipurpose School, St. Mary’s High School and OES International School. In addition, it also has many higher educational institutions such as Fr. Conceicao Rodrigues Institute of Technology, Tilak College of Arts and Commerce and Jhunjhunwala College. Many reputed healthcare providers have also set up centers here, the most prominent being Fortis Hiranandani Hospital, Sterling Wockhardt Hospital and MGM New Bombay Hospital.

Fortis Hiranandani Hospital in Vashi
Fortis Hiranandani Hospital in Vashi

Vashi is extremely popular as a shopping destination and with good reason. The biggest malls of Navi Mumbai are all located here, which include Raghuleela Mall, Inorbit Mall, City Centre Mall and Palm Beach Galleria Mall. Apart from this, the area is teeming with grocery shops and supermarkets. The Vashi Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) is the largest wholesale market in not just India, but the whole of Asia. For foodies too, this node has a lot to offer from fine dining restaurants to fast food joints and easy on the pocket places.

Residential profile of Vashi

Most of the earlier housing complexes in Vashi were low rise buildings, with high rise towers coming up later to meet the ever increasing demand, though the latter remain fewer in number. Vashi is, by and large, a saturated residential market and new constructions are not too many, at the moment. There is speculation that the low rise areas may undergo redevelopment and be converted into high rise, once the aforementioned Navi Mumbai airport comes up to meet demand, but this remains to be seen.

Apart from Palm Beach Road, Vashi is the most premium housing destination in Navi Mumbai and purchasing a home here requires strong financial commitment. The average base price for a multistory apartment in this node is ~Rs. 12,500/sq. ft. and prices can go above Rs. 15000/sq. ft. as well, depending on the complex and location. If one is looking for an apartment on rent in this area, he/she will again need to pay a significant rental, the average base rate being Rs. 27/sq. ft.

Vashi’s location next to Thane Creek means that it has large ecologically sensitive mangrove forests, near which all construction activities are prohibited and prior permission from environmental authorities needs to be obtained. Some major projects such as Palm Beach Residency have borne the brunt of flouting the coastal regulatory zone (CRZ) rules, with residents having to manage without regular water or power supply from the authorities. For a home buyer, it is essential to check that all required permissions have been obtained before purchasing an apartment.

With the airport, Seawoods-Uran railway line, Trans-Harbour link and Navi Mumbai International Airport Influence Notified Area (NAINA) megacity projects coming up not too far from Vashi, the prices are likely to see further appreciation due to increased demand. Investors would probably be better served investing in commercial real estate in Vashi, rather than residential properties, as the probability of getting commercial clients would be higher at these high price points.

Conclusion

Vashi has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the development of Navi Mumbai and its location next to Mumbai at the junction of major road and railway corridors as well as being a major business hub will ensure it retains its premium over other areas. Being an established destination, home buyers here have little to worry about in terms of amenities, infrastructure etc., with only the property cost being an inhibiting factor.




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