The state government has issued a notification for the Development Plan (DP) for the 23 villages merged in the Pune city limits following the approval for the draft DP in December last year.
The notification,which was issued on March 2,would help expedite the implementation of the DP for these areas. However,it excludes the decision on the Bio-Diversity Park (BDP) in the area.The long-pending development plan will pave way for planned and regulated growth in the fringe areas.
Additional chief secretary,Urban Development Department (UDD),TC Benjamin told Newsline,As some areas will be converted into residential zones,the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) will have to plan out the necessary amenities. It should be doing the so in three months.
The Chief Minister is yet to decide on the BDP,he added. The draft DP,approved by the PMC in 2005,recommends that 1,600 hectares of land in these fringe villages (mostly on hilltops and slopes) be reserved for BDPs. This includes 978 hectares owned by private parties. The civic body will have to acquire the land from these individuals and compensate them for the same.
With politicians across party lines demanding four per cent construction in the BDPs and environmentalists opposing the same,the CM restrained from taking a decision,and,instead,announced that a committee would be appointed to resolve this issue within two months.The CM directed the UDD regarding the committee and the department has sent a note on the appointment of technical experts to him.
The committee is set to look into the land use,greenery and reservation in the BDP. In the absence of a DP,there has been little development in these villages over the last two decades.The state government recently scrapped the tag of low-water availability zone from 332.62 hectares in the fringe areas.
The FSI in these zones was restricted to 0.33 and only low-rise constructions were permitted. The scrapping of the zone will lead to increased building activity in the area. The state approved the planning unit number one for Baner and Balewadi in January 2008.
After the villages were merged in 1997,the PMC took eight years to prepare a DP,which was sent to the state government on December 12,2005. The realty sector is relieved that a decision has been taken. Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India (Credai),Pune,president Satish Magar said the approval of the DP was long-awaited and it would open up development in these areas. The PMC should be able to provide the necessary amenities. It has to be seen how soon things fall in place, said Magar.