The 1980’s era cinema is to be transformed into a modern 50,000 square foot Palm Valley Medical Center.
PMB, one of the nation’s leading real estate owners and developers across the continuum of care, plans to complete work in May for a challenging, adaptive reuse project, converting a 50,000-square-foot 1980s-era multiplex movie theatre to a modern medical use. The project is currently 90 percent pre-leased.
The re-purposed facility is being developed immediately west of the Abrazo West Campus, a 188-bed acute-care community hospital and Level 1 Trauma Centre operated by Phoenix-based Abrazo Community Health Network.
PMB pursued the unique conversion in response to the need for class A medical office space in a highly-constrained on-campus market.
The site, built between 1931 and 1934, is now listed as a prime example of Constructivism in architecture, and after a long dispute between the authorities, the developer and the local community, it is hopefully destined to become a cultural and educational centre as planned. It has a distinctly industrial feel and thus serves as the perfect venue for events.
Archistroj Studio produced a masterplan in 2012 for the conversion of the former freight railway station area to multi-functional urban area, maintaining the main station building and industrial footprint.
Further redevelopment plans were proposed in November 2019. Sekyra Group, in addition to commercial space and rental flats, plans to build residential houses south and east of the building.
From mill to museum While run profitably until the 1960s, the group of mills were nationalised by the National Textile Corporation (NTC) in 1974, and over the past decade wound down. In a plan first proposed in 2009 — when NTC gave the India United Mills 2-3 to the city as a reserved public space — the Municipal Corporation will open the 15-acre compound to the public in 2019, a century and a half after its launch as one of the city’s first mills.
The museum is planned with exhibits on the history and future of textiles in Mumbai, Maharashtra and India, from handlooms to mills to modern powerlooms. Sadly, NTC still has no clear plans for its 12 remaining mill compounds in space-starved Mumbai.
Dr Shekhar Krishnan is a historian and social scientist who works with the Greater Mumbai Municipal Corporation Estates Department. You can follow him on Instagram and Twitter @bombayologist