Unauthorised living: How lines are getting blurred in Delhi’s rural ring – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: Along the Najafgarh drain, the last remaining farmlands of Roshanpura are being divided into 50-100 square yard spaces by narrow lanes. On its way to becoming the world’s biggest urban agglomeration by 2028, Delhi is fast losing its rural periphery, like at Roshanpura.

And while, 1,731 unapproved residential areas are now in the list of regular colonies, the massive demand-supply gap in low-income housing and rapid migration continue to force the creation of informal housing localities.

Villagers blame the lack of economic opportunities and builder-politician-bureaucratic nexus for the mushrooming of informal inhabitations. Parsuram, 74, the last pradhan of Roshanpura before panchayats were abolished in 1989, testifies to open agricultural spaces turning into ‘kachchi’ colonies right before his eyes.

“Whenever a farmer requires money for family marriages, medical expenses or other needs, he sells his land to property developers who divide it into plots and sell them,” he said. “What earlier happened at night, now happens in broad daylight.”

Master Plan Delhi 2021 envisioned 920 sq km of Delhi’s 1,483 sq km territory becoming urbanised by next year, up from around 732 sq km in 2005-06 and 823 sq km in 2015-16. However, the quality of this urbanisation is questionable, new Roshanpura being an example.

Parsuram’s 16 acres — among the last remaining farmlands in Roshanpura — is hemmed in by concrete structures on all sides. “The vegetables I grow brings in Rs 40,000 per acre, but not all farmlands can sustain families,” the septuagenarian mused, noting that unapproved urban expansion could be stopped if the local administration and police stepped in.
Unauthorised living: How lines are getting blurred in Delhi's rural ringIn Papravat village a few kilometres away, the same pattern is visible. Paras Tyagi, who runs the Centre for Youth Culture Law and Environment, which deals with issues related to Delhi’s villages, claimed that land records of Papravat show that half of the village’s 1,000 acres have been sold, most of them to third party colony developers. “Agriculture land in Papravat comes under the land-pooling policy, but if land is converted into unplanned colonies, what will remain for development land-pooling?” Tyagi asked. Colonies cropping up on agricultural land has also been noted in Dhichaun Kalan, Lampur and Malikpur villages.

Delhi adds more than 1,000 people to its migrant population each day, but there is no low-cost housing for them. In 2001, the proportion of migrants in the population growth of Delhi was 40%, rising 45% in 2011 and expected to cross 50% by 2021. Studies project urban land gravity centres moving to North-West and South-West districts, both of which have space in the form of agricultural land.

Pradeep Dagar, 41, a farmer in Dhansa village abutting the Jhajjar border, rued that the city had left them behind. “Even as Delhi prepares the Master Plan for 2041, the provisions of MPD 2021 haven’t been fully implemented for us,” he grumbled. “Why can’t we get the benefit of land pooling? Why do banks deny us loans despite our having clear titles to our land?” Villagers confide that lack of access to bank credit leaves them vulnerable to property dealers. “Once sold, construction takes place on the plot at night, and within a week a housing colony is a fait accompli,” alleged Dagar.

According to the projections of the 2019 economic survey of Delhi, the city needs 24 lakh new housing units by 2021, 54% of these in the low-income category. Of these, Delhi Development Authority has built only an estimated 3.5 lakh units. AK Jain, former planning commissioner of DDA and architect of MPD 2021, accused the government of encouraging unauthorised colonies by giving house owners ownership rights. “The profit margin for owners on regularisation of these colonies is huge, much more than formal properties,” Jain pointed out, citing Jamia Nagar, Sainik Farms and Mahendru Enclave as examples of well-to-do people using this route to double their investment in three years.

While Tyagi said Delhi needed policy changes like the central Swamitwa scheme to update rural land records and the abolition of lal dora provisions, a revenue department official claimed that in 2015, a special task force was constituted to check illegal land activities and two weekly drives are conducted. In fact, he revealed, last month one inspection team was attacked by the locals of Surakhpur Road, with several municipal staff requiring hospitalisation.

The official explained that the revenue department could only carry out demolitions, but prosecution was the responsibility of the land-owning agencies. To stop the cat-and-mouse game of illegal colony developers, the official said “villages have to be demarcated and fenced off, prosecutions initiated and steps taken to meet housing needs”.



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Delhi metro turns interchanging stations into commercial hubs – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: Located a short distance from each other, both Anand Vihar and Karkardooma Metro Stations are important interchange facilities where Blue (Dwarka-Vaishali/Noida Electronic City) and Pink (Majlis Park-Shiv Vihar) Lines merge, thereby creating a thriving transport hub. This is also where the capital’s first transit-oriented development (TOD) project — East Delhi Hub — is coming up.

Delhi Metro has now started turning these busy interchange stations into commercial hubs with malls, restaurants, offices, banks and even transit hotels on offer.

The 60-acre site, where Delhi’s first TOD project would come up, is situated around Blue and Pink Line stations of Karkardooma flanked by Anand Vihar interchange station on the eastern end. The project would see 30 residential and commercial towers, with the tallest being 48 storeys (161 metres) high. The first phase would see four towers come up around Karkardooma’s Blue and Pink line corridors.

Creating the East Delhi Hub project was a challenge as highrise residential towers would be centered around the Blue and Pink lines. Despite two elevated corridors and two busy interchange Metro Stations, the project has been designed in such a manner that the buildings coexist with nature instead of looking like a concrete jungle.

At the heart of the project is a green area spread over 10 acres. There would also be extensive usage of vertical and terrace gardens. The 48-storey tower would have a facade with 2-3 layers of traditional lattice work in different patterns to trap dust and create standing waves that damp out noise.
Delhi metro turns interchanging stations into commercial hubsThere would be high-density, mixed-use buildings close to the stations as Delhi Development Authority’s (DDA) TOD policy aims to induce people to walk, cycle and use Metro and buses. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) is planning commercial development at Karkardooma station to cater to the rise in demand.

DMRC would lease out an area measuring 9,563 square metres at Karkardooma Pink Line station, which would include space on the first, second and third floors for specific purposes like retail, organised commercial space, offices, banks, etc. Plans are also afoot to allow educational institutions and coaching centres. The space for the complex was kept during construction of the spacious Pink Line station, said a DMRC spokesperson.

“Even before the TOD project comes up, the commercial complex will cater to the existing residential and office areas nearby. The station also lies in close proximity to Karkardooma District Courts Complex. Separate access is available at the station for commercial areas and parking space, apart from a prominent and spacious frontage,” the DMRC spokesperson said.

At Anand Vihar, DMRC has approximately 8,600 square metres available at the older Blue Line station. “The station is located next to a huge transport hub with connectivity to Pink and Blue lines, railway station and ISBT. The area also has adequate social and physical infrastructure and amenities such as educational institutes, hospitals and nursing homes, entertainment facilities and Yamuna Sports Complex. Sahibabad and Patparganj industrial areas are also in the vicinity. Such factors give it a high potential for commercial development,” said the spokesperson.

The area has been divided by DMRC into two packages, one being 1,130 square metres at the concourse level and another of 7,470 square metres on the ground and first floors. “The tender for the first package has already been invited, while the one for the second is scheduled for next month,” said the official.

The foundation stone for East Delhi Hub was laid by Union home minister Amit Shah in January this year and DDA selected NBCC for implementing the project, which has a deadline of 2023.

The Karkardooma TOD project was approved by DDA in 2014, but then it went into cold storage. With DDA finalising its TOD policy last year, the project was revived. DDA has also selected areas near Mayur Vihar Extension, Dwarka Sector 21, Rohini Sector 18, Mukundpur, Sarojini Nagar and INA Metro Stations for development under the TOD policy.



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DDA proposes maximum FAR of 300 on land meant for rehabilitation of squatters – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: Seeking to make Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana financially viable and feasible, the DDA on Tuesday proposed to allow a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of 300 on the remunerative component of any land area meant for rehabilitation of squatters, with a flexible mix of uses, officials said.

The existing provision in Master Plan Delhi 2021 provides for minimum residential component of the land area for rehabilitation of squatters to be 60 per cent and the maximum area of remunerative use to be 40 per cent, the urban body said in a statement.

As on date, the remunerative component could only be developed as per the land-use and the FAR permissible under that category, it said.

The authority, the highest decision-making body of the DDA, on Tuesday “took a decision for making PMAY project financially viable and feasible”, a senior official said.

“The approved proposal shall allow a maximum FAR of 300 on the remunerative component with a flexible mix of uses, irrespective of the land use of the said pocket,” the statement said.

“This will pave the way for development of JJ clusters and help in achieving the goal of ‘Housing for All’ in Delhi. The approved proposal will now be sent to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs for final notification under Section 11 A of DD Act,” it added.

A meeting chaired by Lt Governor Anil Baijal was held through video-conferencing. DDA Vice Chairman Anurag Jain and other members of the authority — Vijender Gupta, Somnath Bharti, O P Sharma and Dilip Kumar Pandey — attended it.

In other decisions taken in the meeting, it was also proposed to facilitate setting up of a waste processing plant, the statement said.

Land use of an area measuring 8,094 sqm at the Integrated Freight Complex, Ghazipur, has been changed from commercial to utility. As per the MoU signed in October 2, 2019 between DDA, MCD and CSIR, the DDA had agreed to provide land for setting up the plant, it said.

The approved proposal will now be sent to the Housing Affairs ministry for final notification.

Also, to transparently dispose of Group Housing plots, auction route has been approved and amendment in Nazul Land will be applicable after approval of the ministry, it added.

And to facilitate applicants to get flats of his or her choice under DDA housing schemes, the authority has taken a decision to give them this option on “modest preferential location charges”, it said.

This will be based on the units’ floor location, corner location, facing green area or facing main road. No preferential location charges for floor will be taken for allotment of ground floor as preferred floor to persons with disability, the statement said.

Among other moves, due to COVID-19 pandemic, it was decided to retain the existing rates of misuse charges, other than residential, for the year 2020-21 as compared to the year 2019-20. The misuse charges are levied where any property has been used for the purpose other than the use prescribed as per the terms of the lease deed, it said.

“Land use measuring about 5.76 acres for expansion of essential facilities at Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) Hospital, Vasant Kunj, has been changed from residential to public and semi-public. In February 2020, DDA has allotted 5.9 acres of land to the Delhi health department for further use by ILBS for creation of essential facilities,” it added.

Other decisions, included, nod to incorporate operational structures relating to Regional Rapid Transit System corridors in the Master Plan for Delhi 2021, similar to the exemption given to the DMRC, the DDA said.

Relaxation of parking norms for state bhawans or state guest houses was also approved, it said.



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Pay 1-3% extra for choice of flat in Delhi development authority localities – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: Landing a Delhi Development Authority (DDA) flat is nothing less than winning a lottery, more so if you get a flat in an area of your choice. While applicants can mark three preferred locations, they cannot pick a particular one. DDA’s Housing Scheme 2020, however, could be a first in this regard.

Sources said DDA plans to launch its latest housing scheme in December. On offer would be nearly 1,000 flats for high and middle-income groups. For the first time, applicants would be able to opt for a flat on a floor of their choice, corner location or facing green areas or the main road. If the applicants manage to get such a flat in the housing scheme’s draw of lots, they would have to pay extra for the location.

In a meeting held through videoconferencing and chaired by LG Anil Baijal on Tuesday, it was decided to allow applicants to opt for flats of their choice. “DDA has taken the decision to give applicants this option on modest preferential location charges. This will be based on the unit’s floor, corner, facing green area or the main road. No such charges will be levied for allotment of ground or preferred floor to persons with disabilities,” a DDA spokesperson said.

According to sources, those opting for a ground floor flat would have to pay an extra 3% of the total cost, flats on the first floor or facing green areas would cost 2.5% more, while 1.5% extra would be levied for a second floor flat.

DDA also took a decision for making Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana financially viable and feasible, ensuring that in situ slum redevelopment projects were developed in a shorter period.

“Master Plan of Delhi 2021 provides for a minimum 60% residential component of the land area for rehabilitation of squatters and maximum area for remunerative use to be 40%,” said the spokesperson, adding that the remunerative component could only be developed as per the land use and Floor Area Ratio (FAR) permissible under that category.

The official said, “The approved proposal shall allow a maximum FAR of 300 on the remunerative component with a flexible mix of uses irrespective of the land use of the said pocket. This will pave the way for development of slum clusters and help in achieving the goal of Housing for All in Delhi.”

The approved proposal will now be sent to Union ministry of housing and urban affairs for final notification.

The authority also approved the change of land use of an area measuring 8,094 square metres at Integrated Freight Complex, Ghazipur from commercial to utility to facilitate setting up of a waste processing plant to be built by South Delhi Municipal Corporation. DDA also gave its nod to auction of group housing plots to ensure more transparency in the process.



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