Union urban development minister Kamal Nath may be keen on making Delhi grow vertically to meet the city's increasing housing demands, but Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit is not too enthusiastic about the idea.
When asked to react to Kamal Nath's recent remarks on the need for high-rises, she said proper infrastructure has to be in place before tall buildings are allowed to come up.
"We must have enough water. We must have enough power…escalators should be functioning. We also have to maintain greens," Dikshit said.
"Delhi has a sense of space, it should not become a claustrophobic city, it should become an open city… Personally, I am not very keen on high-rises," she said.
At the same time, she said if there is a need, high-rises can come up in outer Delhi as there is no dearth of land there. "But yes, in the outer portions of Delhi where there is lot of vacant land and which is no longer being used for agriculture, I am sure we can make (buildings there)," she said.
Dikshit was speaking after attending a workshop organised by the National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB).
She said NCR should have common facilities or else people from neighbouring regions would keep flocking to Delhi.
On the review of the Master Plan of Delhi, Dikshit said it has to be seen how it shapes up. "Let us see how it comes along. A plan will be made and opinions will be sought," said Dikshit.
She urged the NCR Planning Board to push for the completion of the eastern and western peripheral expressways, so that heavy vehicles such as trucks can skip Delhi.
Stating that NCR is becoming densely populated, she said, "There is a huge pressure on water, transport connectivity, health and education as 5 lakh people reach Delhi to settle down per year. Apart from this, the population of NCR towns is also increasing rapidy," she said.