Here’s some good news for Mumbaiites living in old cessed buildings that have been built before 1969. The state government has announced a floor space index (FSI) of 3 for such dilapidated structures.
The move is expected to provide a major boost to plans of redevelopment of such properties.
FSI is the ratio of the total built up area allowed to the size of the plot on which the building stands.
At present, only buildings constructed up to 1940, which are put under A category, enjoyed the FSI of 3. This has now been extended to all buildings constructed before 1969 (both B and C category included). Most of these buildings are located in the island city and are in desperate need of redevelopment.
The announcement was made by chief minister Prithviraj Chavan in the state assembly on Friday. “All buildings built before September 30, 1969, will be covered by this decision,” he said.
For several years, builders have been reluctant to undertake redevelopment of these buildings as the plots on which they are constructed are small and it was difficult to redevelop with an FSI of 2.5. As a result, residents continued to languish in old structures with the constant fear of the buildings collapsing.
Developers have welcomed the move, saying that it will have a major impact. “The hike was needed and it will really bolster the creation of affordable homes in the city,” said Sunil Mantri, chairman, Indian Merchants Chambers (real estate committee).
While housing activists are also happy with the decision, they want the government to look beyond just hiking FSI. “The state should beef up the corresponding infrastructure as only hike in FSI will not serve any purpose, apart from putting a strain on existing resources,” said Utsal Karani, secretary, Janhit Manch.
Clubbing buildings that were earlier classified as category A, B and C, the state announced on Friday that it would give floor space index (FSI) of 3 to all cessed buildings to boost redevelopment activity in the city.
FSI is the amount of construction that can be made in relation to the size of the plot. Buildings constructed before 1969 which pay cess to the government are called cessed buildings.
Until now, the state granted FSI of 3 to just A category buildings, those built prior to 1940, while those constructed between 1940-50 (B category) and 1950-1969 (C category) were given FSI of 2.5.
Now, the state has clubbed them all in the same level. Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan made this announcement while replying to a debate on infrastructure in the city.
“All buildings built before September 30, 1969, will be covered by this decision,” he said.
Though the extra FSI will hardly affect densely populated chawls, it will benefit those living in areas like Matunga, Byculla, Gamdevi, Mahim, and Dadar which have bigger plots with smaller population ratio.
According to Shadaab Patel chairman and managing director of Platimum Constructions Private Limited, the recent announcement was muchawaited move.
“There would be creation of more housing stock, which could also result in some price correction,” he said.
However, builders want more such proactive steps.
“The next move should be single-window permissions so that approvals are processed faster,” said Sunil Mantri vice president of the Nationa Real Estate Development Council.