The Maharashtra government Tuesday published the draft of its ‘green building policy’ that ensures incentives for buyers and developers to invest in green buildings.
The buyers of property in green building will be entitled to a property tax rebate for a period of five years from securing the Occupancy Certificate (OC) based on the green building rating of the property secured from the empowered agencies. The buyer of a property having a five-star or platinum rating would get rebate of 10 per cent in property tax while those with four-star or gold and three-star or silver ratings would get rebate of 7.5 per cent and 5 per cent, respectively in the property tax.
The policy states that the municipal corporation can choose to award any additional incentives at its level over and above the incentives mentioned by the state government.
Similarly, the state government would provide rebate on development charges to the developers securing a green building certification from empowered agencies in accordance to the rating secured by them. Those with the platinum rating would get rebate of 7.5 per cent in the development charges while those with gold and silver ratings would get rebate of 5 and 2.5 per cent, respectively in development charges.
It further said that the making of a green building leads to a marginal increase in the construction cost and the government, taking cognizance of it, has offered incentives to developers to ensure that the extra cost is not passed down to the consumer. The consumers are also given incentives to nudge them towards green developments through regular buildings.
For availing the benefits, the developer has to make an expression of intent to construct a green building and must submit his plans to the empowered agencies and fulfill all the criteria for the pre-certification. The agency then monitors the construction process as per the pre-established parameters and makes recommendations towards sustainable construction practices. The pre-certification document then must be submitted to the concerned municipal corporation along with a self-attested undertaking by the developer and the architect, declaring their intention of constructing a green building with the requisite rating to start availing the benefits.
On completion, the empowered agencies would issue a green rating certificate. In case the final certificate is not issued, provision certificate would be considered for award of incentives till a year of obtaining the Occupation Certificate, after which the final certificate would be required for continuation of incentives.
For post-completion benefit, the developer would submit a copy of the certification to the municipal authority and if the rating matches the original declaration that the developer made, then he will be granted the OC provided all other obligations for the same have been fulfilled. If the project has a rating lower than what was originally mentioned in the declaration, then the builder will have to deposit the difference in rebate as well as a 200 per cent penalty to secure the OC.
The policy also states that a municipal corporation must modify its standard operating procedure for building permissions to reflect the changes mentioned in the policy. The developer may apply for a refund of the development charges after submission of the final certificate. The corporation will have to maintain the list of green buildings to ensure that the property tax rebate are reflected directly into the tax invoice.
The Maharashtra government would soon be signing an MoU with TERI-GRIHA (Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment) and GBCI-LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) to certify the buildings as green buildings.
The state government said the policy would be applicable to all upcoming commercial as well as residential buildings. Commercial buildings include offices, IT parks, banks, shopping malls, hotels, hospitals, airports, stadiums, convention centres, education institutes, libraries and museums.
The state government envisages an urban Maharashtra with a thriving construction sector as a backbone for economic progress while balancing environmental concerns and setting new benchmarks for sustainability, it said.
It said the building industry accounts for 40 per cent of global energy and water consumption and almost 48 per cent of solid waste generated. The green concept and techniques are aimed at achieving energy efficiency, effective waste management, thereby ensuring that minimum stress is being put on natural resources. The green buildings have benefits of reduction in water and energy consumption. Energy saving ranges from 20 to 30 per cent while water savings from 30 to 50 per cent.
The state government has appointed deputy directors of Town Planning, Urban Research Cell and Central Building in Pune as officers to hear the suggestions and objections on draft policy. Residents having any suggestions or objections on the policy should submit it within a period of one month from now, said government notification.
The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has been leading in implementing the green building concept. It has declared benefits in issuing additional FSI (Floor Space Index) between 3 and 7 per cent for projects achieving more than 30 per cent predicted savings in energy use, water use and embodied energy using precertification.