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Maharashtra set to implement uniform building rules

Besides promoting simplified and uniform building development norms across all municipalities and metropolitan areas, the move, being planned under the government’s Ease of Doing Business (EODB) reforms, will also see an increase in the permissible buildable area indices in a majority of regions, said sources.

Written by Sandeep Ashar | Mumbai |
January 10, 2020 3:38:00 am
Maharashtra building scheme, Maharashtra uniform building scheme, Maharashtra land, Maharashtra housing societies, India news, Indian Express Sources said that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Urban Development Minister Eknath Shinde are in favour of the reform, and that a formal sanction to the file in this regard is expected to come in the next few days.

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IN A boost to the ailing real estate sector, the Uddhav Thackeray-led state government is set to implement uniform land and building development rules across Maharashtra.

Besides promoting simplified and uniform building development norms across all municipalities and metropolitan areas, the move, being planned under the government’s Ease of Doing Business (EODB) reforms, will also see an increase in the permissible buildable area indices in a majority of regions, said sources.

Once the new rules come into force, only the Mumbai municipality and certain areas carved out as special planning zones will have their own set of development control regulations (DCR). Development permissions in all other municipal corporations, municipal councils, metropolitan regions, and all such areas where the regional plans regarding land use are in place will be governed by the same set of rules. As of now, every municipality has its own set of regulations.

Sources said that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Urban Development Minister Eknath Shinde are in favour of the reform, and that a formal sanction to the file in this regard is expected to come in the next few days.

Thackeray’s predecessor, Devendra Fadnavis, who was also the urban development minister, had first pushed the proposal, with the government also publishing draft rules in March last year. The plan, said sources, was also to make industrial precincts developed by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) a part of the new regime.

“The historic development of industrial areas was contemplated in localities on the fringes of the urban environment. But a majority of the industrial suburbs and areas in metropolitan areas are now surrounded by residences. In some cases, many of these industrial areas have become functionally obsolete with DCRs imposing fresh curbs on industrial activity,” said a source. The plan under the new draft rules is to promote more mixed land use in such industrial suburbs.

On the lines of the Mumbai’s new DCRs, the new rules, to be called ‘Unified Development Control Regulations’, will link the height of a building to the width of the adjoining road. What this basically means is that wider the road, higher the vertical limit for buildings in the vicinity and vice versa.

The new rules will also see the skyscraper culture, prevalent in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region, spread its wings to other areas of the state, with a more liberal floor space index regime for affordable housing and slum redevelopment schemes. Under the new regime, builders can avail incentive floor space index (FSI) for cluster redevelopment and integrated township schemes, and slum rehabilitation, across cities. Also, 15 per cent FSI will be available for recreational amenities for big layouts. While exclusions from FSI computations will be removed, the government will allow an additional 60 per cent FSI over and above the permissible FSI for residential construction, and 80 per cent for commercial activities.

For construction of housing for economically weaker sections and low income segments, the total permissible FSI upto 3 (depending on the road width) has been proposed. The new rules will also make way for a more liberal regime for the transfer of development rights (TDR).

Leading real estate bodies, including Maharashtra Chamber of Housing Industry and National Real Estate Development Council, have been pushing this reform for a while. The Centre’s NITI Aayog, too, has backed the initiative.

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