July22 , 2024

Sabarmati Riverfront, Ahmedabad: A Comprehensive Guide to the City’s Iconic Landmark

More articles

More Food Articles

Jaydip Parikh
Jaydip Parikh
Jaydip Parikh, the brains behind Ashaval and the coolest digital marketer from Ahmedabad! He's like a treasure hunter, finding all the best things about his city and sharing them with the world. Get ready to have a blast in the land of surprises and discover the magic of Ahmedabad with Jaydip by your side!

Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, is a popular urban development project that has transformed the city’s riverfront into a vibrant and sustainable public space. The project was first suggested in the 1960s by French architect Bernard Kohn, but it wasn’t until 2005 that the construction began. Since then, Sabarmati Riverfront has become a major urban asset and a popular tourist destination in Ahmedabad.

The Sabarmati River flows peacefully under a clear blue sky, lined with lush green trees and vibrant flowers along the riverfront in Ahmedabad

The Sabarmati River has been an integral part of Ahmedabad’s history and culture for centuries. However, the city’s rapid growth and urbanization had led to the river’s degradation and neglect. The Sabarmati Riverfront project aimed to address this issue by developing the riverfront into a modern and sustainable public space that would provide recreational, cultural, and economic opportunities for the city’s residents and visitors. Today, Sabarmati Riverfront is a symbol of Ahmedabad’s transformation and a testament to the city’s commitment to sustainable urban development.

Key Takeaways

Table of Contents

  • Sabarmati Riverfront is a popular urban development project in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, that has transformed the city’s riverfront into a vibrant and sustainable public space.
  • The project was first suggested in the 1960s by French architect Bernard Kohn, but it wasn’t until 2005 that the construction began.
  • Sabarmati Riverfront is a symbol of Ahmedabad’s transformation and a testament to the city’s commitment to sustainable urban development.

Historical Context

The Sabarmati River flows gently through the bustling city of Ahmedabad, flanked by vibrant greenery and modern architecture, with people strolling along its serene promenade

Sabarmati River Significance

The Sabarmati River has played an important role in the history of Ahmedabad. It has been an integral part of the city since its founding in 1411. The river served as an important source of water and provided a backdrop for cultural and recreational activities. During the dry seasons, the river bed became a place for farming. The Sabarmati River also holds religious significance for Hindus, who consider it a sacred river.

The inception of the Sabarmati Riverfront Project

The Sabarmati Riverfront project was proposed in the 1960s, but it was not until 2005 that construction began. The project aimed to develop a waterfront along the banks of the Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad, India. The project was initiated by the then Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi, who wanted to transform the riverfront into a world-class tourist destination.

Role of Bernard Kohn

The French architect, Bernard Kohn, was hired to design the Sabarmati Riverfront project. Kohn had previously worked on riverfront development projects in France and was known for his expertise in urban planning. Kohn’s design for the Sabarmati Riverfront project included a series of parks, promenades, and gardens that would enhance the natural beauty of the riverfront.

Phase One

Under Phase One of the project, the Sabarmati Riverfront was gradually opened to the public as and when facilities were constructed. The riverfront was designed to be a hub of activity for the city, with facilities for sports, cultural events, and recreational activities. The Events Ground, for example, had a lawn spread over 40,000 square metres that could host over 50,000 people. Exhibition centres and other facilities were also constructed along the riverfront.

Phase Two

The second phase of the Sabarmati Riverfront project is currently underway and is scheduled to be completed by 2027. The focus of Phase Two is on developing the riverfront as a sustainable and eco-friendly space. The project aims to create a green corridor along the riverfront, with parks, gardens, and open spaces that will provide a habitat for local flora and fauna. The project also includes plans for a riverfront museum, a riverfront market, and a riverfront amphitheatre.

Overall, the Sabarmati Riverfront project is a testament to the vision of the Gujarat government and the people of Ahmedabad. The project has transformed the riverfront into a vibrant and dynamic space that is a source of pride for the city.

Project Overview

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project in Ahmedabad, India is an ambitious urban rejuvenation project that aims to transform the city’s relationship with its river. The project was undertaken by the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Corporation Limited (SRFDCL), a special purpose vehicle set up by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation.

Sabarmati Riverfront Development Corporation Limited

The SRFDCL was established in 1997 to oversee the implementation of the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project. The corporation is responsible for the planning, design, and execution of the project, as well as the maintenance of the riverfront area. The SRFDCL is headed by a chairman and a board of directors, which includes representatives from various government departments and agencies.

Project Objectives

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has three main objectives: environmental improvement, social infrastructure, and sustainable development. The project aims to create a public asset out of the private river edge, which was previously inaccessible to the public. The riverfront area has been transformed into a vibrant public space with parks, gardens, promenades, and cultural venues. The project also aims to provide better housing and infrastructure for the city’s residents.

Inauguration

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project was inaugurated in 2012 by the then Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi. The first phase of the project was completed in 2012, and subsequent phases have been completed in stages. The project has been widely praised for its innovative design, which combines environmental sustainability with urban development. The riverfront area has become a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, and has helped to boost the local economy.

Overall, the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project is a landmark project that has transformed the city of Ahmedabad. The project has created a new public space that celebrates the city’s cultural heritage and natural environment, while also providing better infrastructure and housing for its residents.

Design and Infrastructure

The Sabarmati Riverfront project is an environmental improvement, social upliftment, and urban rejuvenation project that aims to reclaim the private river edge as a public asset and restore the city’s relationship with its river. The project has been designed to effectively manage the river as critical infrastructure, with a focus on environmental improvement, social infrastructure, and sustainable development.

Reclaimed Land and Erosion Control

One of the primary objectives of the Sabarmati Riverfront project is to reclaim land along the riverbank, which was previously used for industrial purposes. The project has reclaimed approximately 204 hectares of land along the 11-km stretch of the Sabarmati Riverfront in the first phase of the project. The reclaimed land has been transformed into public spaces, including parks, gardens, and promenades.

To prevent erosion, the riverfront has been designed with a sloping embankment that is reinforced with gabion walls and geotextile fabric. The gabion walls are made of wire mesh baskets filled with stones and are used to stabilize the soil and prevent erosion. The geotextile fabric is used to separate the soil from the gabion walls and prevent the soil from washing away.

Sewage and Storm-Water System

The Sabarmati Riverfront project includes major interceptor sewer lines on both banks of the river, capturing more than 38 sewage outfalls and diverting them to the treatment plant. The project also includes a storm-water drainage system that collects rainwater and prevents flooding. The drainage system includes a network of underground pipes, open channels, and retention basins.

Land Reclamation Techniques

The Sabarmati Riverfront project has used a variety of land reclamation techniques to transform the previously industrial land into public spaces. The techniques used include:

  • Soil stabilization: The soil has been stabilized using lime and cement to prevent erosion and improve the stability of the soil.
  • Ground improvement: The ground has been improved using techniques such as vibro-compaction and dynamic compaction to increase the bearing capacity of the soil.
  • Landfill: The project has used landfill to raise the level of the land and create a flat surface for development.

Overall, the Sabarmati Riverfront project has been designed to effectively manage the river as critical infrastructure, with a focus on environmental improvement, social infrastructure, and sustainable development. The project has successfully reclaimed land along the riverbank, prevented erosion, and created a sewage and storm-water system to improve the overall health of the river.

Environmental Impact

The Sabarmati River flows through the urban landscape, flanked by greenery and modern architecture. A bridge spans the river, with boats cruising along the water

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has had a significant impact on the environment in the area. Here are some of the main areas that have been affected:

Biodiversity Park

One of the key features of the Sabarmati Riverfront is the Biodiversity Park, which covers an area of 41 hectares. The park is home to a variety of flora and fauna, including several species of birds such as Flamingos, Egrets, and Kites. The park has been designed to provide a natural habitat for these species, and to promote biodiversity in the area.

Waterfront Environment

The Sabarmati Riverfront has had a positive impact on the waterfront environment. The riverfront has been developed to provide a clean and safe environment for visitors, and to promote the use of the river for recreational activities. The development includes a paved walkway, cycling tracks, and green spaces. The riverfront has also been landscaped to include a variety of plants and trees, which has helped to improve the overall aesthetic of the area.

Treated Sewage Water

One of the key environmental benefits of the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project is the treatment of sewage water. The project includes a sewage treatment plant, which treats the sewage water before it is discharged into the river. This has helped to reduce the pollution levels in the river, which has had a positive impact on the environment and the health of the local population.

Overall, the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has had a positive impact on the environment in the area. The project has helped to promote biodiversity, improve the waterfront environment, and reduce pollution levels in the river.

Recreational Facilities

The bustling Sabarmati Riverfront features vibrant recreational facilities and a lively atmosphere. Boats, gardens, and promenades line the river, creating a picturesque scene for visitors to enjoy

Sabarmati Riverfront has become a popular destination for recreation in Ahmedabad. The riverfront project has transformed the once-polluted river into a clean and beautiful waterway, surrounded by parks, gardens, and promenades. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, from boating to walking and jogging.

Parks and Gardens

The riverfront has several parks and gardens, including the Sabarmati Riverfront Flower Park, which covers an area of 1.4 hectares and has more than 100 varieties of flowers. The park also has a children’s play area, a musical fountain, and a gazebo. Another popular park is the Sabarmati Riverfront Urban Park, which has a jogging track, a skating rink, and a cricket ground.

Promenade and Walkway

The riverfront promenade is a 11.5 km long walkway that runs along the river. The promenade has several entry and exit points and is accessible to people of all ages. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll or go for a brisk walk while enjoying the scenic views of the river and the city.

Boating and Water Activities

Boating is another popular activity on the riverfront. Visitors can rent paddle boats, speed boats, and motor boats from several vendors located along the river. There is also a water sports complex that offers activities such as kayaking, canoeing, and water skiing.

Overall, Sabarmati Riverfront offers a wide range of recreational facilities and attractions for visitors of all ages. Whether you want to take a stroll along the promenade, enjoy the beauty of the parks and gardens, or go for a boat ride on the river, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Cultural and Social Spaces

The Sabarmati Riverfront bustles with vibrant cultural and social activities, featuring open-air markets, performance spaces, and green promenades

Sabarmati Riverfront is not just a place for recreational activities but also serves as a hub for cultural and social events. The Riverfront features several spaces dedicated to cultural and social activities that attract people from all walks of life.

Events and Performances

The Riverfront has several stages and plazas that host various events and performances throughout the year. These events range from traditional dance and music performances to contemporary art exhibitions and theatre shows. The outdoor performances and events are free to attend, making them accessible to everyone.

Marketplaces and Vending Areas

The Riverfront also has several marketplaces and vending areas that offer a unique shopping experience. The Ravivari Flea Market is a popular attraction that takes place every Sunday. The market offers a wide range of products, including clothes, accessories, handicrafts, and antiques. The vendors at the market are friendly and welcoming, making the shopping experience even more enjoyable.

Public Amenities

The Riverfront also features several public amenities, including public washrooms and drinking water facilities. These amenities are well-maintained and easily accessible, making them convenient for visitors. The Riverfront also has several seating areas and benches where visitors can relax and enjoy the scenic views of the river.

Overall, Sabarmati Riverfront is an excellent example of how a public space can be transformed into a vibrant, cultural, and social hub. The Riverfront’s cultural and social spaces offer something for everyone, making it an ideal destination for families, tourists, and locals alike.

Connectivity and Accessibility

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has greatly enhanced the connectivity and accessibility of the Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad. The project has increased street connectivity, and the public transportation coverage is expected to double from the existing nearly 25 per cent. The green cover has also been doubled from the existing 20 per cent to 40 per cent [[1]].

Bridges and Access Points

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has constructed several bridges and access points to connect different parts of the city with the riverfront. Ellis Bridge, Nehru Bridge, and Subhash Bridge are some of the major bridges that have been constructed under the project. These bridges have greatly improved the connectivity of the riverfront with the rest of the city [[4]].

Pedestrian and Cyclist Paths

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has also created dedicated pedestrian and cyclist paths along the riverfront. These paths are separate from the vehicular traffic and provide a safe and convenient way for pedestrians and cyclists to move along the riverfront. The paths are well lit and have benches and seating areas for people to rest and enjoy the view of the river [[2]].

Parking and Public Transport

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has also created dedicated parking areas near the riverfront. These parking areas are easily accessible and provide ample space for visitors to park their vehicles. The project has also greatly improved the public transport connectivity of the riverfront. The Urban Lab conducted a research project to improve accessibility of the riverfront through an integrated public transport system of light rail, buses, and ferry services [[2]].

The City Level and Upper Level of the Sabarmati Riverfront have been improved to provide better connectivity and accessibility. The City Level has been developed as a public space with walkways, parks, and gardens. The Upper Level has been developed as a commercial and recreational space with restaurants, cafes, and shops [[1]].

Overall, the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has greatly improved the connectivity and accessibility of the Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad, making it a popular destination for visitors and locals alike.

[1] The Indian Express
[2] The Urban Lab
[4] Wikipedia

Economic and Commercial Aspects

Commercial Development

Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has been a significant economic engine for Ahmedabad. The project has created around 16 million square feet of development rights for sale, which has attracted investments from various sectors such as commercial, residential, and hospitality. The project has opened up new areas for commercial development, and many businesses have already set up their operations in the area. The project has also facilitated the development of high-quality mixed-use dense urbanscape, which has added to the commercial value of the area.

Tourism and Identity of Ahmedabad

Sabarmati Riverfront has become a significant tourist attraction in Ahmedabad. The project has transformed the riverfront into a vibrant public space, which has become a hub for cultural and recreational activities. The riverfront has also become a symbol of the city’s identity, reflecting its rich cultural heritage and modernity. The project has also led to the development of various tourism-related infrastructure such as hotels, restaurants, and recreational facilities, which has boosted the tourism industry in Ahmedabad.

Urban Regeneration

Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has been a catalyst for the regeneration of Ahmedabad’s central business district (CBD). The project has facilitated the redevelopment of the riverfront area, which has led to the creation of new access routes to the riverfront. The project has also led to the development of various public spaces, which has enhanced the quality of life of the residents. The project has also facilitated the relocation of slum settlements on the riverfront to better housing facilities several kilometres away, which has improved the living conditions of the urban poor.

The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has played a crucial role in the success of the project. The AMC has been responsible for the planning, execution, and maintenance of the project. The project has been executed in a transparent and participatory manner, which has ensured the participation of all stakeholders in the development process. The AMC has also ensured the sustainability of the project by incorporating various green features such as rainwater harvesting, solar energy, and waste management.

Challenges and Criticisms

The Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project has been a subject of both praise and criticism since its inception. While the project has brought about a transformation in the city of Ahmedabad, not all aspects of the project have been implemented smoothly.

Flooding and Pollution Control

One of the major concerns with the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project is flooding. The riverfront area is prone to flooding during monsoon season due to the heavy rainfall. While the riverfront project was designed to mitigate flooding, there have been instances where the riverfront has been inundated with water, leading to damage to the infrastructure and property. There have also been concerns about the pollution levels in the Sabarmati river, which have increased due to the influx of people and commercial activities in the riverfront area.

Neglected Aspects and Community Impact

Critics of the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project have pointed out that certain aspects of the project have been neglected. For instance, the resettlement and rehabilitation (R&R) of the people who were displaced due to the project has been a contentious issue. The R&R process has been criticized for not being transparent and for not adequately compensating the affected people. Additionally, there have been concerns about the impact of the project on the local communities, including the fishermen who depend on the Sabarmati river for their livelihood.

Sustainability Concerns

Another criticism of the Sabarmati Riverfront Development Project is the lack of focus on sustainability. While the project has brought about a significant change in the city’s landscape, there have been concerns about the long-term sustainability of the project. The project has been criticized for not being environmentally friendly, as it has led to the destruction of the river’s natural ecosystem and biodiversity. Additionally, there have been concerns about the project’s impact on the city’s water resources, as it has led to increased dependence on the already ailing Narmada river.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the operating hours for the attractions at the Sabarmati Riverfront?

The Sabarmati Riverfront is open to visitors every day of the week. The operating hours for the attractions at the Sabarmati Riverfront vary depending on the season. During the summer months, the Riverfront is open from 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM. During the winter months, the Riverfront is open from 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM.

How much does it cost to enter the Sabarmati Riverfront, and are there any additional charges for specific activities?

Entry to the Sabarmati Riverfront is free of charge. However, visitors may have to pay a fee for certain activities, such as boating or cycling. The fees for these activities are reasonable and are designed to encourage visitors to enjoy the Riverfront’s many attractions.

What are the notable landmarks and attractions to visit along the Sabarmati Riverfront?

The Sabarmati Riverfront is home to many notable landmarks and attractions. Visitors can explore the Flower Park, the Sabarmati Ashram, the Riverfront Market, and the Sabarmati Riverfront Event Centre. The Riverfront also offers stunning views of the Sabarmati River and the surrounding city.

Can visitors access the Riverfront during the night, and are there any restrictions after dark?

Yes, visitors can access the Riverfront during the night. However, visitors are advised to exercise caution when visiting the Riverfront after dark. The Riverfront is well-lit, but visitors should stick to well-travelled areas and avoid isolated spots.

What recent developments have been made at the Sabarmati Riverfront, and how do they impact visitors?

The Sabarmati Riverfront has undergone significant development in recent years. The Riverfront now features a promenade, a cycling track, a children’s play area, and a food court. These developments have made the Riverfront more accessible and enjoyable for visitors of all ages.

What recreational activities are available for visitors at the Riverfront?

The Sabarmati Riverfront offers a wide range of recreational activities for visitors. Visitors can enjoy boating, cycling, jogging, and walking along the Riverfront. The Riverfront also hosts cultural events and festivals throughout the year, providing visitors with a unique and immersive experience.

Popular on Ahshaval

- Advertisement -

Love Travelling?