1970's drive in cinema

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Bandra’s drive-in theatre to return



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  • The site of the new drive-in; The area of the plot on which the new drive-in will be built is around 75000 sq metres
    Bandra’s iconic drive-in theatre, where many romances bloomed despite the vast grounds being infested with mosquitoes, is making a comeback.

    Pulled down in 2003 as the marshy land on which it stood in Bandra-east began transforming into BKC, one of Mumbai’s swankiest business hubs, the new drive-in theatre, less than half the size of the original, will be ready by the end of 2017.

    While old drive-in could accommodate 800 cars, the reconstructed one will have space for only 295 cars.

    The drive-in theatre was constructed in the 1970s on a part of a vast piece of mangrove forest, with the Mithi river to its south, Bandra to its east, and to the north Kurla. While the rest of the marshy land has disappeared under BKC’s shiny glass fa├žade buildings -- housing banks, stock market regulators, corporates, hospitals, and hotels -- the part that was occupied by the drive-in theatre is still intact.

    The area of the plot on which the new drivein will be built is around 75000 sq metres.

    Just like the old drive-new, its new avatar will also have a movie hall, albeit of a smaller capacity.

    A senior officer of the Maker group, which is developing the drive-in, said the just like all single-screen theatre owners got permission to redevelop their theatres and use one-third the area for film screenings and use the rest for other commercial purposes, the drive-in’s redevelopment will to be “mixed-use”.

    The Maker group has already constructed five buildings in BKC. They plan to build one more hotel and a mall here, apart from the drive-in. “Each car parked in the drive-in will be provided with a sound system and an AC duct to enjoy the movie experience. The company will soon appoint an operator to run the drive-in theatre.

    A top Man group official, who did not wish to be identified, said some false stories spread about the safety inside the drive-in combined with the video boom had led to the closure of the drive-in. “But we think Mumbai is now, once again, ready for the unique experience of watching a movie at a drive-in,” he said.