Over 29,000 ready-to-move flats remain vacant in Delhi – ET RealEstate

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NEW DELHI: Over 29,000 ready-to-move flats constructed for the urban poor under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission in Delhi have lain vacant for a long time. One of the main reasons behind these flats not being allotted yet is the lack of coordination among the multiple agencies involved.

After the Supreme Court recently ordered the demolition of 48,000 slum houses built on encroached railway land, Delhi government wants to prevent displacement and has asked officials to formulate plans to shift the affected people to these flats.

The AAP government started a survey last year to identify slum inhabitants who were to be shifted, but the partnering surveyors, Delhi Development Authority and Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board, parted ways after a partial assessment of slum clusters.

With DDA having identified 23 slum clusters for in situ redevelopment even as its first two projects at Kathputli Colony and Kalkaji are yet to be completed, by 2021 yearend, Delhi will have 45,000 flats, of which 16,600 are under construction, for allocation to slum residents. Over 20 lakh people live in 675 slum clusters in Delhi, a majority of them located on DDA and Northern Railway land.

A Delhi government official claimed that one reason why no one has been shifted is the reluctance of land-owning agencies to pay Delhi government for the relocation. Under the Delhi Slum & JJ Rehabilitation and Relocation Policy, notified in 2015, a land-owning agency has to pay Rs 7.5-11.3 lakh per flat to DUSIB in advance to meet the cost of construction, land and process of relocating residents of slums. The land-owning agencies benefit by having their plots freed of encroachment.
Over 29,000 ready-to-move flats remain vacant in DelhiOf the slum clusters, 499, peopled by 1.7 lakh citizens, are located, ironically, on land belonging to DDA. Established in 1957 to promote a balanced development of the capital, the population of which saw a huge spike after 1947, DDA first formulated a Master Plan for Delhi in 1962. As it now prepares a Master Plan visioned for 2041, half the city’s population lives in informal settlements like slums and unauthorised colonies.

The Municipal Corporation of Delhi carried out the first slum clearance in 1956, intending to free the encroached land for community facilities. The slum dwellers were to be provided flats on licence fee in rehabilitation colonies. The sluggishness of such projects is reflected in DDA’s unfinished, decade-old, in situ slum redevelopment projects at Kathputli Colony and at Kalkaji.

To that DDA has added 23 slum clearances. “Work has begun at six projects with more than 30 clusters. The tendering process is going to start very soon,” a DDA official disclosed. “The in situ slum redevelopment and rehabilitation project of tenable slums situated on DDA land is being done to eventually make Delhi slum-free and achieve the mission of housing for all by 2022.”

On its part, DUSIB has shifted families from various slums erected on land owned by NHAI, PWD and other agencies to 2,157 flats constructed under JNNURM. A DUSIB official revealed that the relocation was made after the land owners made payments as prescribed in the rehabilitation policy. At present, slum dwellers pay 1.12 lakh for a flat plus Rs 30,000 as maintenance fee for five years. Many find it beyond them to pay this amount and get trapped by local money lenders.

Between 2007 and 20013, the then UPA government sanctioned 16 housing projects for the slum dwellers. “The Centre provided Rs 1,120 crore to build 55,424 flats with a matching sum to be contributed by Delhi government,” said former Union minister Ajay Maken.

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Old colonies to see ‘regeneration’ in Delhi master plan 2041 – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: One of the key focus areas of the upcoming Master Plan for Delhi (MPD) 2041 will be the ‘regeneration’ of the capital, in more ways than one. Residential areas that came up half-a-century ago, apart from old commercial complexes, would see redevelopment as part of the plan.

Delhi Development Authority is preparing the MPD 2041, which will be a vision document for the city, in collaboration with National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA). DDA has recently started a massive public outreach through online meetings, as the authority wants the future growth of the city to be more ‘organic’ and based on ground realities.

“There are some colonies where homes built 40 to 60 years ago had single-floor houses and where Floor Area Ratio (FAR) is available. When the colonies were made, the FAR was 1.33 but is 2 now and if those in old houses decide, we will provide support,” DDA’s vice-chairman Anurag Jain told TOI, adding that the concept of regeneration would be applicable to many other areas, including redeveloping commercial complexes like Nehru Place and Bhikaji Cama Place, on which DDA is already working.

“Earlier, it was said if your home is in the middle of a market you can’t have peaceful sleep but now you have access to new ways of living. You don’t need to earmark separate plots for these and on the same plot, there can be a vertical mix. You can have offices on lower floors and residential area in the top floor,” Jain said. “Mixed land use will help in improving walkability but it has to be done following all norms and guidelines,” he added.

The concept Walkability, in fact, is another important focus area of the upcoming MPD, Jain said. “If you can walk to work, to the Delhi Metro station or other facilities, your dependence on other modes of transport will go down. The concepts of Transit Oriented Development and mixed land use are part of the overall focus on improving walkability.”

“Safe walking, which includes the concept of ‘eyes on the street,’ will be built in. For instance, shops on ground floor will face streets so that their lighting further lightens up the streets,” he said.

“We are also thinking of a Blue Green policy. If filtered and treated water flow instead of sewage and we create a green strip around it, it will add to the value of the property there,” Jain said.

The policy aims at treating drain water and storm water and then improving the area along these drains as green areas.

“We are pushing for some major new changes in the MPD and the provisions will come up very clearly in the MPD 2041. However, if we can start some things, we will implement them by amending the MPD 2021. Why should we wait for MPD 2041 to come officially?” he added.

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DDA holds online meet for Delhi master plan 2041 – ET RealEstate

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NEW DELHI: Seeking to engage the public and stakeholder groups in the formulation of the Master Plan of Delhi (MPD) 2041, a meeting was held on Wednesday between DDA officials and several residents and representatives of RWAs of unauthorised colonies, officials said.

The Delhi Development Authority (DDA), in partnership with the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA), is currently preparing the Master Plan for Delhi 2041.

The day-long public consultation with residents and RWAs of unauthorised colonies of Delhi was held on the WebEx online platform in three batches from 11 am onwards.

Around 120 people and RWAs had registered through emails, and the meeting was also attended by senior officers from the DDA and the NIUA, a senior DDA official said.

The meeting was chaired by Leenu Sehgal, Commissioner (Planning), and Neeraj Bharti, Commissioner (Land Pooling) of the DDA.

The officers shared details of the PM-UDAY Scheme and application process to be followed by property owners in unauthorised colonies of Delhi. The participants were requested to share their suggestions towards the registration process as well as give ideas towards area improvement and redevelopment in unauthorised colonies, the officials said.

The concerns highlighted by the participants were mainly about the lack of access to basic services of water and sanitation and other facilities in their localities, the DDA said.

“Other issues raised by the participants included legality of their properties, narrow access roads, congestion, conflicts between commercial and residential uses, quality of drinking water, waterlogging. A common concern expressed by most participants was regarding vulnerability and risks related to disasters such as fire, earthquakes,” an official said.

All participants expressed readiness to cooperate with government agencies to improve and regularise their colonies.

The DDA public portal is open to all residents of Delhi to share their views for the future of the city that will become part of a larger vision and strategy for MPD-2041, the official added.

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Old DDA colonies may get a new lease of life – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: The Union housing and urban affairs ministry is working on a policy to allow redevelopment of old DDA colonies in the national capital, which will pave way for taller buildings with amenities such as parking space and facilities for lifts.

As per the plan, the redevelopment work would be taken up only if 70% or more house owners in a pocket or complex agree to the proposal. Sources said this would be an enabling policy and will be completely up to the house owners to decide whether they want redevelopment.

Officials said the work has just begun and all best options to bring maximum benefits to the existing flat owners are being considered. They added the policy would also have provisions making it mandatory for the entities which would undertake redevelopment works to give rental charges to the families during the construction period. Such redevelopment works may take up to three years.

Sources said dozens of DDA colonies built decades back were low-rise as the FAR (floor area ratio) was less during those times. Now since the FAR has been increased to push vertical development, these complexes will have more dwelling units after redevelopment.

“Now installing lifts in the existing blocks is very difficult as this requires consent from all the house owners in that block. The colonies planned decades back had no provision for car parking as the main mode of private transport those days were two-wheelers. Redevelopment of colonies will meet the current requirements,” said a source.

Currently, almost all common areas including the open space earmarked for parks have become informal parking spaces in DDA colonies and the garages meant for two-wheelers have become store rooms.

Some experts told TOI that the policy, if framed, would need to address the issue of 30% of residents in case they don’t come on board. Secondly, the agencies responsible for infrastructure would need to do their job to meet the demand post redevelopment as there will be more number of dwelling units.

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