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|Business District of Navi Mumbai|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Thane|
|Vidhan Sabha constituency||Belapur|
Vashi is a node in Navi Mumbai, across the Thane Creek of the Arabian Sea on the outskirts of city of Panvel. It is one of the first nodes developed by the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) in Navi Mumbai township and Panvel.
Vashi is divided into 31 sectors. Sectors 1 to 8 consist of residential buildings, sectors 9 to 29 have combined residential and commercial, educational institutions, Sector 17 is a prominent residential, commercial as well as shopping area, Sector 30 is home to many malls, information technology parks, 5-star hotels and an exhibition centre and the railway station.
The malls (listed according to their opening times) in Vashi are Center One, City Center, Raghuleela Arcade, Inorbit Mall, Satra Plaza. The APMC (Agricultural Produce Market Committee) market, one of the largest markets in India is in and around Sector 19.
Sector 31is alloted for PAPs G.E.Scheme for residential as well as commercial purpose.
Schools and colleges
The main schools in Vashi are Sacred Heart High School, Fr.Agnel's Multipurpose High School,St Lawrence School, New Bombay High School and St.Mary's Multipurpose High School.
Climate and geography
Being close to the sea, Vashi is mostly humid and hot in summer and mildly pleasant during the months of November, December, and January. The Western Ghats run parallel along the east of the mainland town, resulting in relatively heavier showers than island Mumbai during the monsoon season — June to August.
Economy and services
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. Most new firms setting up base in Navi Mumbai township are in or close to Vashi.
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 heavy with commercial activity, especially retail.
A large APMC market, the biggest in Asia for wholesale agricultural produce, is in Sector 19 and a part of Sector 18.
Vashi is the first node of Navi Mumbai from the island Mumbai direction. It is directly connected by rail and road. An earlier hovercraft service to Mumbai island was discontinued citing heavy operational losses. A proposed international airport near Panvel is under final stages of approval. It is expected to bring traffic relief to the existing Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai.
It takes about 50 minutes to travel by train from Vashi railway station to the main city. The railway is known as Harbour line, extending from Mumbai CST to Panvel. The two rail options to travel from Mumbai western suburbs are via Dadar and via Wadala Road. Vashi is connected with Thane via Trans Harbour Railway Line (Thane - Turbhe - Sanpada - Vashi).
Vashi is well connected with Mumbai by roadways, about an hour and a half hour by road, though the new Eastern Freeway has drastically cut down commute time to nearby South Mumbai to almost 30 minutes. The Sion-Panvel Highway and the picturesque Palm Beach Road intersection is at Sector 17. Auto rickshaws, taxis, buses and radio cabs are easily available. Auto rickshaws charge according to the meter unlike other parts of the city, however if you are travelling between Vashi railway station and Sector 29 or Kopar Khairane then auto rickshaws are available on share basis where you don't have to pay as per the meter but pay as per seat which is reasonable if one is travelling alone between this route and do not mind sharing auto rickshaw with other fellow passengers. However you have to note that this share auto basis will not drop you at your desired exact location but will drop you on the main road as the route is straight between Vashi railway station to Sect 29 or Kopar Khairane, one may ask for a stop anywhere on the main road route between Vashi railway station and Koper Khairane. There are two main bus depots in Vashi: one at the railway station and the other near Shivaji Chowk.
Another bus stand is expected to be made operational at Sector 12. Vashi's population has increased dramatically since[when?] and this has resulted in heavy traffic during the peak hours on the Vashi-Kopar Khairane road and Thane-Belapur Industrial Belt which is Asia's largest industrial belt. Plans to connect Vashi to island Mumbai and to the rest of Navi Mumbai through Metro have been planned and will be executed in future metro and monorail plans.
Vashi has sparse bus routes within its residential area. BEST buses are available from Vashi to the suburbs of Chembur, Sion, Dadar, Worli, Byculla, Bandra, Mulund, Bhandup, Ghatkopar, Santacruz, Andheri, Powai, Dindoshi and Borivali. BEST AC Kinglong and NMMT AC Volvo buses are available from Vashi to Dadar, Bandra, Andheri and Borivali.
Culture and sports
Much like the rest of Mumbai and India, cricket is distinctly popular. Football is the second most important sport. The Mini seashore area in Sector 10A is home to several large and small playgrounds and other facilities for all outdoor sports and indoor games, including swimming, football, cricket, volleyball, basketball, tennis, badminton, etc. A golf course at Kharghar area of Navi Mumbai is a 15-minute ride, and the turf club at Mahalaxmi in island Mumbai is a 45-minute ride on the Eastern Freeway.
Many NGOs run shelter homes for children, the elderly and for animals in this part of the town.
The Vishnudas Bhave Natyagruha is a popular[clarification needed] cultural performance centre. The area is also home to many big institutions of major religions. The food and cultural traditions of Mumbai are very apparent here owing to a large cosmopolitan society of all classes.
Crime is moderate to low[clarification needed] compared to some other areas of Mumbai, partly influenced by the high education and employment rates enjoyed in Vashi.