Ahmedabad development body readying 6,800 hectares for utilities – ET RealEstate

AHMEDABAD: When Auda announced its budget of an estimated Rs 929 crore on Wednesday, a 125% jump over last year, it indicated the amount the apex planning body was ready to invest in developing large public land by 2022. This would not have been possible had Auda not reorganized land around Ahmedabad’s periphery by an art which planners call ‘land reconstitution.’

For the first time AUDA revealed that since 1999, 83 major Land Reconstitution (LR) plans totalling an area of 51.6 sq miles or 13,376 hectare had been completed and that additionally 48 new local area plans totalling to 26.3 square miles or 6,803 hectares are under various stages of preparation in the AUDA region. “On an annual basis, this is equivalent of supplying 3.9 sq miles per year of services land,” said a senior AUDA official.

The Land Reconstitution (LR) process was used extensively according to Gujarat Town Planning and Urban Development Act for SP Ring Road in 1999.

“In the initial days of the SP Ring Road AUDA wanted a 52m-wide corridor with 120m-wide road and 200m-wide green belt on both sides of the road,” said the AUDA official. He added, “Initially the plan was to acquire a 1,640 feet wide and about 31 mile long corridor using compulsory purchase for reserving the rights of way.” This according to the AUDA official would have caused huge displacement with large scale acquisition.

“The very first notification for land acquisition for SP Ring Road invited 40,000 public objections,” said the AUDA official in the town planning division.

Most of the land parcels were irregular and devoid of access . These plots were painstakingly reconstituted to avoid land acquisition and disputes. The acquisition ranged from smaller land holdings that together accumulated into 185 acres in more populated areas like Ambli and Shilaj villages while layouts involving large land parcel holdings together constituted 2,770 acres. these large land holdings had less population and were around areas like Sarkhej and Okaf-Makarba.

“In all some 22,700 acres of service land was available to us around SP Ring Road in a self-financing manner,” said the AUDA official. Today this same technique is being used to make available some 6,803 hectares of land for development purposes.

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