MUMBAI: The cabinet on Tuesday relaxed norms for construction on lands marked as no-development zones (NDZ) across the state to incentivise the creation of integrated townships on large areas.
The cabinet gave its nod for a proposal that stated sweeping changes in its special townships policy, which regulates development of large plots in a planned manner. Some of the most crucial changes include allowing developers of such townships to construct on NDZ without having to go through tedious procedures, making it mandatory for developers to provide better connectivity to public transportation and its emphasis on better mobility within the township.
However, these changes will soon see lands tagged as NDZ opened up to residential and commercial construction with higher floor space index (FSI).
So far, developers would have to go to the divisional commissioner and propose to change the zone of the land, a process, which was long and served as disincentive for builders wanting to construct on the NDZ.
In addition, the government has also allowed builders to be able to construct more on these areas. So far, developers were only able to build with 0.5 FSI, which is 50 per cent of the total area of the plot.
Now, relaxing this, the government has brought this condition on a par with residential areas, where developers were able to construct with 1 FSI. The government has also proposed that the 1 FSI can be hiked by as much as cent per cent on payment of premiums to the government.
In addition to these measures, the government has also decided to scrap a condition, which made it mandatory to leave half the plot marked as NDZ, vacant. Carrying out construction on the remaining portion of the land. All these, the government hopes, will make projects lucrative enough for developers to invest in them.
However, there are also fears that such relaxation in norms will only mean more leeway to builders to construct more and more with no specific planning norms. “We have insisted on following norms, be it for the minimum width of the road to the open spaces to be left, along with facilities like cycling tracks,” said an official from the urban development department.