Vashi is a township in the city of Navi Mumbai and is popularly called the 'king' of Navi Mumbai. It is one of the first "nodes" developed by CIDCO in the city.
Vashi's reputation for being organized, but not too large or crowded like "the big city", has led to the continued growth of its resident and commuter population. Vashi is among the top ten most developed zones in the Mumbai Metropolitan area.The estimate population of Vashi is around 400,000. Vashi is the second most populated node of Navi Mumbai after Nerul
Vashi is bordered by the Sion-Panvel Highway (plus the railway station) and Nerul to the south, the Thane-Belapur Road and Sanpada/Turbhe to the east, Khairane Channel and Kopar khairane to the north, and Thane creek to the west. It is one of two Navi Mumbai nodes that directly connect to Mumbai across Thane creek (via the Mankhurd-Vashi Bridge), the other being Airoli to the north. The township center, arguably, would be Shivaji Chowk, a central square located on the Vashi-Turbhe road. It is the site of a large bronze statue of the Maratha warrior-king and folk hero Chhatrapati Shivaji on a horse, and of an upcoming museum exhibit about him. The chowk is surrounded by Sector 17, the cineplex, the fire station and the bus depot.
Being in close proximity to the Thane creek, Vashi is mostly humid and swelteringly hot in summer and mildly pleasant during the winter months of November December, and January. Western Ghats run in parallel along the east of the town, resulting in relative heavier shower than Mumbai.
Unlike most other towns in the country
, and in contrast to its older and larger neighbor Mumbai
, Vashi was planned before being constructed, as was the city of Navi Mumbai itself.
Like the rest of Navi Mumbai, Vashi is broken down into what are known as "Sectors", which are further divided into plots. As such, the address system is organized, and the township easy to navigate when compared to neighbouring Mumbai.
Vashi is one of the oldest and most populated nodes in Navi Mumbai. Many companies from Mumbai and other parts of India have set up shop there. Sector 17, in turn, is the commercial heart of Vashi, hosting a dense concentration of small businesses, offices, clinics, banks, retail outlets, restaurants and franchise operations. Sectors 9 and 10 are also heavy with commercial activity, especially retail. A large APMC market, the biggest in Navi Mumbai for wholesale agricultural produce, is located in Sector 19 and part of Sector 18.
Vashi used to have near continuous power supply.
As of late 2005, however, one to two hours a day of scheduled load shedding has been enforced by MSEDC, cycling among various areas of the city, in order to cope with the rising population and power consumption.
But Vashi being a major revenue gainer and for its almost zero pending bills and low distribution losses is overdue to get rewarded with 24 hours uninterrupted supply for which MSEDC will procure electricity from private electricity generators in the area.
Also NMMC is looking at generating electricity using non-conventional methods of generating electricity like wind energy as Navi Mumbai is blessed with a long coastline and generating energy from waste which is collected throughout the node.
Load shedding was stopped temporarily in 2008 when Tata Power started suppling power in Navi Mumbai. Power cuts have resumed in Navi Mumbai for about 4-5 hours daily due to a state-wide deficiency in power generation.
The municipal (NMMC
)water supply is near constant (12-18 hours daily), and occasional shutdowns are often short enough to be borne through by the overhead water tanks in many apartments and the central water tower system.
Being a planned township, Vashi features many roads
that intersect at right angles. Road maintenance is carried out by the NMMC.
Roads in the township often get damaged by the monsoons
, as potholes are simply patched up with mud that washes away with the next rainfall.
is available in Vashi, from You telecom, Tata Indicom and the MTNL telecommunications
company has offices in Sector 16-A.
Autorickshaws provide the primary means of personal local transportation. Travelling to other nodes by autorickshaw usually entails the payment of one-and-a-half times the regular meter fare, or some other negotiated fare.
Yellowtop taxicabs operating from designated taxi stands provide the means to travel further to destinations such as Mumbai and Thane; a bridge toll may be charged in addition, where applicable. Luxury and standard long-distance bus services often stop at Vashi en route to other cities and towns across the country.
The orange NMMT public buses , Red and Cream BEST (BrihanMumbai Electric Supply and Transport) which are numbered 500 to 599 (connecting Mumbai and Navi Mumbai) and ST public buses serve as a much cheaper means of transportation. Buses starting from or passing through Vashi's own bus depot allow passengers direct and fast passage to destinations across Mumbai and Navi Mumbai. Some Mumbai-Vashi routes, however, drop in frequency or stop altogether at night.
The route numbers for some important bus destinations that can be reached from Vashi:
- 1, 4, 8, 11 - Thane
- 30, 31 - Uran
- 50, 59 - Panvel
- 51 - Kalamboli
- 100 - Mahape Mulund
- 501 - Kurla
- 505 - Sion, Bandra
- 504, 506 - Sion, Matunga, Dadar TT,
- 507- Nerul-APMC-Vashi-Mankhurd-Govandi-Ghatkopar-Kamani-AirIndia Colony- Vakola-Santacruz(E)Rly Stn.
- 521 - Sion, Matunga, Dadar TT, Dadar West (Plaza Theater), Shivaji Park, Prabhadevi, Worli, Haji Ali, A/C Market, End At Tardeo.
- 511 - Ghatkopar, Mulund
- 512, 513 - Airoli, Mulund
- 523, 524 - Powai, Borivali
- 524 (Express) - Powai, Kandivili, Borivali
- 533 - Andheri, Oshiwara
Vashi is connected to Mumbai by rail on the Harbour line of the Central Railway, part of the Mumbai suburban railway. Travelling to destinations in Mumbai by rail often involves taking a train to the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus first. Another rail link connects Vashi to Thane(see Transport in Thane).
Vashi Railway station
Vashi has a reputation for being a good place to live, while maintaining access to the city across the creek. Despite its proximity to Mumbai proper, it is self-sufficient in many regards, and has its own thriving atmosphere for residents, shoppers and fun-seekers.
Vashi has grown to become the commercial heart of Navi Mumbai. In recent years, real estate
prices in Vashi have risen, due in part to the creation of new businesses, and due to more businesses moving or expanding into Vashi from Mumbai. Residents almost always live in co-operative housing societies
(abbreviated to CHS). Sector-17 Vashi is the most expensive locality. These housing colonies often contain a number of multi-storeyed apartment
building wings, internal or external parking
space, gardens or flower patches, and a surrounding wall with one or more gates. CHS residents form committees to collect and spend funds for common maintenance, social activities, and hiring of security guard
services. Some sectors are endowed with public parks as well.
Each sector has its own cluster of shops called "mini-markets" that sell basic items such as rice, pulses, candy. Some bigger sectors have bigger "mini-markets" that sell everything from garments to hair-cuts. Sector-17 is one of the large sectors of Vashi and is located near the highway which happens to be the entrance to Vashi. It's very close to Vashi Railway Station. Sector 9 is home to Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church. Sectors 6, 7 and 8 in Vashi are home to Row Houses while Sector 8 also has bungalows.Sector 8 is located close to the place from where hovercrafts would land and take off.
As of the end of February 2008, there are four Shopping malls functioning in Vashi, called Center One, City Center, Raghuleela and Palm Beach Galleria. They host a variety of large and small retailers, including Pantaloons, Big Bazaar ,Globus and MAX, as well as a number of fast food joints and franchises.
Shopping in or strolling around Sector 17 is a popular activity for residents and visitors. The area is packed with retail outlets selling everything from furniture and fixtures to clothing and electronics. It hosts many restaurants and bars, mithai shops, fast food franchises like McDonald's, Domino's, Garcia's pizza, etc popular vegetarian restaurants like Navratna,Golden Punjab, as well as franchises of Monginis, Birdy's, Crroisant, Cafe Coffee Day and the like. Sectors 9 and 10 along the main road are also major commercial and retail areas.8118
There are many schools
and high schools
in Vashi. Few of the well known schools are IES's Navi Mumbai High School[NMHS],Modern School, St. Lawrence High School, St. Marys High School,Father Agnel Multipurpose School and Sacred Heart High School . There are also a few international schools like Ryan International that offer ICSE
Vashi also hosts a number of colleges. Father Agnel College (formally, Father Conceicao Rodrigues Institute of Technology and Karmaveer Bhaurao Patil College (formerly known as Modern College) are among the well known colleges in the node.
Various training and coaching institutes have centers in Vashi. These include NIIT, Aptech and SSI for infotech training, with Career Launcher and Unitech coaching in competitive exam preparation. Recently, The Institute for Financial Markets (IFM), a nonprofit foundation has also opened at the new BSEL tech park opposite Vashi Railway station.
The Mumbai Divisional SSC Board, one of the divisional boards of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary Education is headquartered in Vashi in Sector 16-A.
Avalon Heights International School, the first school of its kind to be affiliated to the University of Cambridge International Examinations, also offers the ICSE syllabus.
The VishnuDas Bhave Auditorium is one of the famous landmarks which hosts a number of plays that are liked by many Navi Mumbaikars.
The Meghraj/Meghdoot cinema halls were the only large movie theater complexes in the node, until 2007 when Adlabs Cinemas opened a 4-screen Multiplex in the new Palm Beach Galleria mall.
Cinemax has also opened a 3-screen Multiplex, which has modern facilities such as recliner seats in City Center in a few months after Adlabs.
Other cineplexes are due to open as part of the Inorbit Mall and Raghuleela mall. PVR Cinemas is planning to open one in Inorbit Mall. Recently, Fame has opened up a 6-screen multiplex, the biggest in Vashi at Raghuleela mall.
Clubs at the Marine Centre, Abbot Hotel, Vashi Gymkhana etc. host dances and shows.
- NMSA - Navi Mumbai Sports Association is a CIDCO owned enterprise providing various Sports Facilities like Tennis, Carrom, Badminton, Chess, Swimming, Squash. Membership is offered in categories like Patron, Life, General and Student Membership.
- RCNB - Rotary Club of New Bombay is an active Youth Club in New Bombay. It is a youth wing of Rotary Club of Navi Mumbai. Individuals between age 18-30 can be a part of this organisation. Rotaractors generally meet every Sunday at Rotary Center, Sector-6, Vashi.
Law and order
Vashi has its own police station in Sector 3, but shuts down for the most part by 10 p.m.
Vashi has a number of health and fitness clubs such as Talwalkars
and the newly opened Gold's Gym
in Raghuleela mall. Many clinics and hospitals
take care of the residents' healthcare needs, such as Lakshdeep Hospital
, NMMC Hospital
and MGM Hospital
. Places of worship for Hindus, Muslims, Jains and Christians are located around the township, as are cultural centers of the various ethnicities of immigrants from other parts of India.
A strip of land in Vashi along the coast of Thane creek
has been developed as a park and is popularly known as the "Mini Seashore" or "Seaside Park". The park is separated from the creek by a large holding pond, which is surrounded by a path that is used as a walking/jogging
track. Residents of Vashi and nearby nodes frequent this area for recreation, relaxation and exercise
. Hundreds walk or run along the track and over the embankment
of the holding pond everyday. Local laughter clubs
enthusiasts can be seen utilizing the park in the mornings. Paddle boats
are rented out for use within the outer pond. Children's rides, horseback riding
and vendors of chaat
or other refreshments are a common sight along the Mini Seashore in the evenings, which is when families tend to visit and the overall footfall is at its peak. very good place to visit
Vashi Railway Station / International Infotech Park
The large and spacious Vashi Railway Station was built into and under the International Infotech Park, to ISO 9002
Constructed over the Vashi railway
station, seven broad white towers form the International Infotech Park
(IIP), a massive office complex developed by CIDCO for the purpose of supporting the information technology
industry in Vashi. IIP features over of built-up space, and was inaugurated on the 14th of June, 1998. Iris Business Services
, 3i Infotech
are among the companies who have set up offices there.
Well known landmarks in Sector 17 include Big Splash and Vashi Plaza.