Robert Stephens' Bombay Imagined: An Illustrated History of the Unbuilt City
Beginning in 1670, Bombay Imagined: An Illustrated History of the Unbuilt City tells the story of 200 unrealized urban visions — aspirations of an evolved metropolis boasting everything from humane housing and expanded parks to sanitation systems and more. Ideas that never saw the light of the day are richly illustrated with archival drawings, contemporary speculations and artistic overlays, illuminating long-lost futures from the city’s never-before-seen past.
Bombay Imagined is a testimony to the audacious dreams of city-lovers, a chronicle of untold narratives across centuries and an insight into the tides that have shaped present-day Mumbai.
“Since Bombay's very inception, its diverse inhabitants have been united in a singular belief: that the place could do with a little improvement. In his painstakingly researched, engagingly presented Bombay Imagined, Robert Stephens excavates visions of the City Unrealized. This is more than just a prospectus of plans and projects that failed to reach fruition (in some cases, thankfully so). It is also a loving tribute to the eccentrics and altruists, hucksters and geniuses who have called Bombay home. I read and re-read it with awe and enjoyment.”
- Naresh Fernandes, author of City Adrift: A Short Biography of Bombay