UT administrator Shivraj Patil on Friday stressed on the importance of research and development in construction technologies to create easy and cheap housing.
While addressing the gathering at a conference organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FCCI) on housing and urban development in North India with focus on Punjab and tricity, Patil said there had to be a collective effort from the government and private sector to find solutions to the urban challenges.
“On one hand, vision and appropriate policy at national, state and local level government is required, on the other hand, methods to deal with issues also need to be devised,” he said.
A Didar Singh, secretary general, FICCI, in his welcome address said Chandigarh enjoyed the distinction of being the first planned city of the country and was witnessing an exponential growth in real estate and infrastructure development along with Panchkula and SAS Nagar.
A Venu Prasad, secretary, housing and urban development, addressed the gathering and highlighted the development planned for Chandigarh and tricity in the coming years.
The conference was attended by local developers and government representatives. The aim of the conference was to discuss policy issues, challenges and partnership opportunities in North India.
The topics discussed were state initiatives in new city planning and urban infrastructure development in Punjab; simplifying approval process to achieve 'housing for all', planning smart and sustainable cities and transit oriented development, impact of Amritsar Kolkata Industrial Corridor (AKIC) on Punjab and tricity; envisioning the future of real estate industry in Punjab.
Addressing the audience on the topic 'Simplifying approval process to achieve housing for all', UT home secretary Anil Kumar said affordable housing in Chandigarh was different from other states as the availability of limited land was a major factor. He talked about the slum rehabilitation plan which is in process in Dhanas. He said Chandigarh was pioneer when it came to the rehabilitation of the economically weaker sections (EWS). He said after the distribution of 8,440 small flats to the slum dwellers another 5,000 flats would be ready for distribution.
These flats are being made keeping in view the needs and necessities of the slum dwellers. The aim is to provide adequate housing with clean water, proper sanitation and other such basic needs. He said work was still on to make Chandigarh a 'slum-free city'.