Mumbai (1661-1947) | Historical Documents II

Mumbai (1661-1947) | Historical Documents II

Land Reclamation Projects of Bombay/Mumbai – Overview 

Having researched on Mumbai’s history,  the land reclamation projects immensely influenced the development of Mumbai, thus, it was chosen as our research interest for the blog.  Furthermore, the British Crown and the East India Company has contributed vastly to the city development in different aspects namely city planning and commerce, therefore, our research is focused in the time period between 1661 and 1947.


Original 7 Islands of Bombay

MumbaiCitymapreclamation overview


(Left) Map of the Islands of Bombay during the Hindu Period © 1843

(Right) Bombay’s Physical Growth ©

In the map on the left, small connections between are annotated.  Whereas in the map on the right, it shows different land reclamation phases of Bombay.

The Map of the Island of Bombay © 1846 Captain Thomas Dickinson

Docks can be seen at the southern part of Bombay


A city won from the sea: The great reclamation scheme at Bombay © 24 May 1911, The Times

“The above sketch plan shows the great reclamation scheme at present under consideration at Bombay. The Bombay Government propose to reclaim from the sea the area shown on the right hand size of the line of dots and dashes. The total area thus created will be 973 acres, the scheme is expected to pay for itself in 69 years, and the Government will then enter into possession of a vast new estate free of cost. A small proportion of the scheme, near Wodehouse Bridge, is already complete. The land is rocky and is only submerged at high water.”

The proposed plan published in the Times is a baroque axial plan combined with a grid system.  The proposed Government House is almost at the most southern point of Bombay overlooking the sea with the main axial in front of it.   The point that noted as “where the king will land” is where Gateway of India is located.


The Map of Bombay © 1954 US army map with the Perry Castaneda Collection, University of Texas.

The main road networks showed a loose resemblance of the proposed plan in 1911 regarding the axial planning.

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