Thane: a realty tale
What gives Thane an edge over its counterparts? Equipped with good commercial, residential and social infrastructure along with excellent connectivity to the rest of Mumbai, Thane and its crown jewel, Ghodbunder Road are redefining the realty scene.
The story of the destination development of Thane would be in complete without the mention of Ghodbunder Road. Commonly referred to as the GB Road, this property market runs entirely through state highway 42 and connects to the Eastern Express Highway, becoming National Highway 3. No wonder, Ghodbunder Road is not only a jewel in the crown of Thane but also the property market that helped shape Thane as a premier residential market. This location defies the conventional wisdom of a property market that claims that picturesque locations are meant for luxury housing only.
The property rates of Ghodbunder road are between Rs 7,500 per sq ft and Rs 11,500 per sq ft, with the average capital values standing at Rs 9,500 per sq ft. It is an equally attractive rental market where the average rental yields are about Rs 20 per sq ft. The beauty of the location is nevertheless breathtaking. It is surrounded by towering hills on one side and with a creek view on the other. The collective consciousness of the old timers, recall it as Ghodbunder village, which used to be a deserted area. But not anymore! This location has today, transformed into a property hotspot where the appreciation has been phenomenal in the last few years, despite the overall slowdown across the city. The development of Thane, as a property hotspot, actually changed the urban landscape in this part of the world and Ghodbunder Road turned out to be the best location of Thane. The urban profile and liveability index of this location has dramatically changed over the last few years. Residential projects, retail options, a cosmopolitan crowd and lifestyle options, have truly transformed this stretch of Thane.
A realty case study
With the boundaries of Thane extend ing to new locations, Ghodbunder Road highlights the growth of the real estate market in Thane. Popular residential areas along and off Ghodbunder Road include Kasarvadavli, Patlipada, Waghbil, Kapurbawdi, Manpada. Ghodbunder Road is growing faster than any other location in and around Thane because it consists of a good mix of developments like residential townships, commercial buildings, educational institutes, shopping and restaurants, etc. At a time when many other high profile locations across Mumbai are witness to a slump in the transaction rate, this area has busted several myths. Thane is today the most preferred stretch as it provides good connectivity to the MMR. This area also provides a scenic view and is thus preferred by the upper middle class segment and now is also getting the interest level of high-end customers due to its scenic view. Thane is increasingly scaling up in the value pyramid of property and some of the developers have recently launched high-end apartments where the price range starts from Rs 15,000 per sq ft. What is proving to be a boon for the location is that the infrastructure and connectivity of Ghodbunder Road has upgraded from time-to-time to keep pace with the real estate development.
With the existing and planned infrastructure development of the Eastern Express Highway and Ghodbunder Road, the connectivity of this area to all parts of Mumbai and suburban Mumbai has enhanced tremendously. The infrastructural initiatives by local authorities TMC and MMRDA (like the construction of flyovers on Ghodbunder Road at Majiwada, Waghbil Naka and near Hiranandani Estate), further add to the connectivity.
In terms of the connectivity and the attraction quotient, Ghodbunder Road connects the Eastern Express Highway as well as the Western Express Highway via Mira Road and Borivali. The developers are hence bullish of its future growth as well. Ramesh Nair, COO business and international director, JLL India maintains that this location has a lot of fresh inventory driven by several infrastructural initiatives and good connectivity in the pipeline. The development authorities have planned a monorail network to serve as a feeder system to a Metro project planned in Thane. The MMRDA has finalised a Metro corridor, extending from Wadala to Kasarvadavali on Ghodbunder Road. The road also provides quick accessibility to Mira Road from Thane, and other micro-markets such as Mulund, Bhandup and Ghatkopar.
“Ghodbunder Road is approximately 20 kms long and links the two main arterial roads of Mumbai, the Eastern Express Highway that starts at Sion and terminates at Thane, while the Western Express Highway starts at Bandra (East) and becomes the National Highway leading to Gujarat. Due to the rapid development, the area has attracted many reputed developers, thus leading to a surge in the launch of many affordable and premium housing projects. Ghodbunder Road is interesting to developers due to the easy availability of large land parcels. From affordable apartments to premium properties, the area offers a wide assortment of housing options,” says Nair.
Social infrastructure such as schools, hospitals, hotels and other amenities that are coming up in the vicinity, are adding to the charm of the location.”One needs to live in a place that provides all the necessary amenities. Definitely, on this count, Thane scores over the other suburbs of Mumbai, as it is catering to the basic needs of one’s habitation.”
Thane is one of those rare markets where the scenic beauty of the region has been exploited for necessary urban habitation first and not luxury living .However, scaling up the luxury value chain has only been a natural evolution. The analysts hence are betting big on this market and rate it as one of the upcoming markets for the next, at least a decade, as it promises to provide an all-round living experience to a large number of people, at an affordable cost.
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