Basements in the city are all set to shrink. The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has come up with a new regulation that makes it mandatory for builders constructing a basement to leave a buffer zone of 2m on both sides of the property being built. This has been done to make sure the adjoining buildings remain safe.
The move comes following building collapse incidents at Chandni Mahal and Uttam Nagar. A senior MCD official said, “Following the house collapses, it has been decided that the clause in Master Plan 2001 will be implemented/enforced at the time of sanction of building plans.”
According to MCD officials, the new rule is in accordance with Master Plan 2001 in which there is a clause that reads ‘Basement up to ground floor coverage is allowed to leave 2m space from adjoining property and is not counted towards FAR’.
Only properties on notified roads that have permission to build basements will be granted the permission. The provision will continue to be implemented till necessary modifications in the Master Plan 2021 are notified.
On September 27, a building in Chandni Mahal in old Delhi had collapsed after the plot next door started digging a basement, killing seven persons. On December 4, another three-storey building collapsed in Uttam Nagar, killing four people. The reason: digging work in the adjoining Metro Restaurant. The building which was 15 years old could not withstand the digging.
“While building basements, property owners do not pay heed to the condition of the adjacent buildings. With the new provision, even though basements will shrink, at least there will be no threats to the lives of people,” added a MCD senior official.