Urban development and renewal of existing cities and towns is critical in order to meet the country’s housing demands, the Economic Survey has said. And it can be achieved with the help of policy reforms that would encourage private sector initiatives in housing and industrial estates. This would also impart additional momentum to overall economic growth, it said.
While the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission and SEZs have given some impetus in this direction, the states, particularly the poorer ones, need to do more on their own.
“There are a number of policy measures, including addressing the limitations of the Rent Control Act (s), the urban land ceiling laws and regulations and issues related to the financial empowerment of local bodies to make them capable of providing services befitting an urban habitation of a middle-income level country, that need to be urgently addressed,” the survey observed.
For urban transport, it said that bus transport systems in metros and large cities must be run by private firms that can use modern logistics and back office systems to plan routes and timings, acquire and analyse data on usage densities and run an integrated people movement system.