Mumbai – An Icon in Indian Real Estate


Abhishek Kiran Gupta
Abhishek Kiran Gupta

By Abhishek Kiran Gupta, Head – Research, Jones Lang Lasalle Meghraj

Mumbai (called Bombay until 1989) initially owed its status as India’s financial and trading hub to the fact that it housed major financial institutions – the Reserve Bank of India, the Bombay Stock Exchange and numerous banks. Earlier, commercial office activity was concentrated in the Central Business District and parts of the Secondary Business District. India’s most prominent skyscrapers loomed up from Nariman Point, defining Mumbai’s famous skyline from an iconic location that emerged on reclaimed land during the construction boom of the 1970s. Retail in Mumbai was booming even then, even though it was confined to traditional bazaars on the island city and lacked an organized approach.

By 1989, the city had lost a significant share of its organized textile industry to a large-scale labor strike. However, other industries in the central suburbs and non-formal occupations flourished, supported by and supporting Mumbai’s growing population. Increased suburbanization in the 1980s led to a spurt in population growth in the northern secondary districts, resulting in decelerated growth on the island city. By this year, Mumbai’s real estate growth was slowly gearing up for a six-year climb until 1995, when valuations in the central districts reached astonishing peaks – and then fell. In the same year, the city launched a second seaport – the Jawaharlal Nehru Port at Nhava Sheva – to serve as a hub port and also to help decongest Bombay Harbor.

Mumbai in 2009 is still the commercial and entertainment capital of India, generating about 5% of India’s GDP and contributing over one-third of the country’s tax revenues. The metropolitan region, with a population of about 21 million, now includes the island city, its suburbs and parts of adjacent Thane and Raigad districts.

Apart from the Bombay Stock Exchange, the city now also houses the National Stock Exchange of India. Together, these two account for most of the share trading volumes in India. Today, the city is home to major financial institutions and the corporate headquarters of several Indian companies and multinational companies.





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