This project has been initiated under the Fort Management Plan. Seth Gangalal V. Mulji Nandlal Pyau at Horniman Circle was inaugurated on 5th January 2017, by Shri. Ajoy Mehta, Municipal Commissioner of Mumbai,.
The Fort Management Plan was initiated by UDRI as an effort to safeguard and conserve the culturally and historically significant Fort precinct. As a part of this plan, need for social amenities such as water fountains, toilets and seating were studied. One of the recommendations was to conserve, renovate and bring back into use heritage pyaus (historically built as an act of charity), many of which are currently neglected and in disuse.
The underground well at Bombay Green (now known as Horniman Circle) dates back to the 18th century when wells were being constructed through philanthropists to serve as water sources. The well served to quench thirst of the cotton brokers, opium brokers, clerks and strangers and a banyan tree near the well providing an ideal resting space for commuters.
The old ground of Bombay Green where this well is located was given the shape of a circular open garden now known as Horniman circle under Bombay’s first major urban design scheme, completed in 1872. The scheme retained the old banyan tree but with the growth of water pipelines and reservoirs, the well itself was no longer actively used and built over by a commemorative pyau (drinking water fountain) in 1873.