Raise Mumbai's FSI

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In Mumbai, the government is restricting how much builders can construct on the land that is available by using this tool. It is extremely regressive and drives up the cost of housing, of commercial real estate, and the cost of living in Mumbai. Higher FSIs enable more offices and apartments to be built on the same land.

FSI is used to regulate the maximum amount of floor space that can be built on a given plot of land. Upon comparing the FSI of Mumbai to other likewise densely populated cities, the differences are clear-cut and unmistakable. For instance, in Singapore, the FSI can be as high as 25, and cities like New York, Chicago and Hong Kong allow FSIs up to 12 or 15, whereas Mumbai's average FSI is 1.3. 

The existence of slums is also undeniably linked to low FSI – in Mumbai, you have the Island City with 1.3 FSI and the suburbs with 1 FSI in one of the densest urban conurbations in the world, and the consequences of this are driving out the poor of any kind of formal housing. The majority of the people who reside in slums are mostly lower-middle income people to middle-income people because they've been priced out of the housing market due to the low FSI.

This is why increasing Mumbai's FSI is crucial. Building more living space in the city will draw more people seeking work. If people are able to upgrade from the slums to currently existing better housing, the slums will quickly fill again with new people who cannot afford proper homes. To improve living standards on a larger scale, the government must loosen their constraints and the FSI must be increased to create new affordable housing and in turn participate in resolving Mumbai's housing and poverty crisis.



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