PMC receives objections to road widening from old city areas
The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has registered maximum objections from the old city areas on the proposed widening of city roads from six to nine metres.
The objections were revealed during a hearing of PMC’s building permission and development department.
The civic body received stiff opposition from areas including Kothrud, Shivajinagar, Erandwane, Parvati-Sahakarnagar, Bibvewadi.
In total, the civic body received objections for around 200 roads across the city.
The PMC is claiming that there are no open areas for development in the city and only redevelopment can help the city’s development.
Unified Development Control and Promotion Regulation (UNDP) has given a lot of opportunity to develop in terms of additional FSI and TDR but if there is no proper width of roads, there is no use of such provision. It will hamper the city’s development as well as revenue losses.
Citizens are objecting to reducing plot size, affecting the front side of the home, fear of demolition of some parts of the existing bungalow and tree cutting.
Some political parties have sprung to help citizens to register opposition in order to gain mileage in the upcoming civic polls.
The PMC has identified 335 city roads on the basis of future development based on the redevelopment and utilization of Transfer Development Rights (TDR) and Floor space Index (FSI).
The PMC has appealed to citizens who are living in areas where roads are widening. Of the total 335 roads, there are 255 roads from the old city limit, and the remaining 80 roads fall in the suburban areas. The PMC is receiving fewer applications from suburb areas as compared to the old city limits.
The civic body received responses from 1,800 citizens who registered a positive as well as a negative opinion on the road widening. However, the total number of applications is around 700. Most of the bungalow societies are at the forefront in opposition. Prima facie, the PMC has found that around 135 roads from where PMC received very less or no applications so far.
Prasanna Joshi, executive engineer of the Development Plan (DP) cell said, “There are fewer applications, but citizen numbers are more as citizens signed applications in groups. We received an application in which 60 citizens signed a single application. To date, we have completed the hearing of around 1,000 citizens. We called individual citizens for hearing.”
Rajendra Raut, superintendent engineer of the building permission and development department said, “The hearing is ongoing, it will take another 15 to 20 days to complete it. After that, we will make a detailed report and submit it to the standing committee. At present, it is too early to comment on the issue.”
Dr Anant Bhagwat, resident and president of Savarkar co-operative society said, “Our society is located in Sahakarnagar area. It is a bungalow society that consists of 55 bungalows. Each one is having around 2,200 square feet of plot size. At present, we have six metres of internal road. The society is on the dead-end of the Taljai hills. Being a bungalow society, we have maintained greenery in our area. We don’t want to widen the road from six metres to nine metres as it will help to boost commercialization in this area, and it will destroy our flora-fauna as well as peace of residents.”
“Under the name of development, the decision is actually favorable to developers and not for common citizens. At present, there are high-rise buildings in our areas, but they have approach roads which are passing through slum areas. If the society road widens, builders will get alternate roads and it will help them to sell their flats at a higher price. In this scenario, how can residents get the benefit? On the other side, our society bungalow’s front side will hamper. We have registered our opposition to the PMC as well as written a letter to deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar and urban development minister Eknath Shinde,” he added.
On the other hand, a resident of Dhankawadi area and member of Kalpataru housing society, Girish Kamble said, “Road width was a hurdle for the development of our society. After the PMC initiative, it will help us to redevelop our society. There are different views on road widening but the PMC will have to make decisions case by case. Development cannot be stopped or imposed on citizens.”
Areas where PMC received maximum applications
Kothrud, Shivajinagar, Deccan Gymkhana, Ghole road, Bhandarkar road, Law college road, Prabhat road, Erandwane, Parvati, Sahakarnagar, Bibvewadi, Dhanakwadi, Aundh, Baner, Mohamadwadi, Tulsibaugh colony, Ambegaon Budruk, Balewadi, Hadapsar, Aundh, Dhanori.