State mulls FSI hike for 20K old bldgs in suburbs

In a move that could spur redevelopment of close to 20,000 buildings in the suburbs and offer its tenants protection from forceful eviction, the state government is looking to hike floor space index (FSI) for dilapidated buildings, a benefit currently offered to such structures only in the island city.
Updated on May 27, 2015 12:44 AM IST
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Hindustan Times | ByHT Correspondent HT Correspondent, Mumbai

In a move that could spur redevelopment of close to 20,000 buildings in the suburbs and offer its tenants protection from forceful eviction, the state government is looking to hike floor space index (FSI) for dilapidated buildings, a benefit currently offered to such structures only in the island city.

The state plans to extend the Development Control Regu-lations (DCR) 33 (7), which governs the redevelopment of old cessed structures in the island city and offers an incentive FSI of 3, to the suburbs too. The state housing department is of the opinion that the step will enhance the pace of redevelopment of old buildings in the suburbs.

“We are working out various methods to speed up the redevelopment of old structures in the suburbs. These people are living in extremely dangerous conditions,” said Ravindra Waikar, state’s housing minister.

Of the 20,000 dilapidated buildings in the suburbs, 400 have been demolished in the past two years and 7,000 families have been forced to vacate their homes.

Housing department officials are studying the 1998 Dinesh Afzalpurkar committee report, which had suggested sweeping changes to rehabilitate old tenants in the suburbs.

The committee had recommended higher FSI, setting up of repair board and transit accommodation for displaced residents of all old buildings in the suburbs.

According to Utsal Karani, secretary, Janhit Manch, the NGO which has been pursuing the matter, there is no protection given to the tenants. “These residents do not know when they will get a new house and are left at the mercy of the landlords and the builders,” said Karani.

Even builders have welcomed the initiative, saying it means less dependence on the TDR (transfer of development rights) lobby. “The TDR is at a record high and we will be less dependent on the TDR lobby, if such a revamp scheme comes through,” said Bhavesh Sanghrajka, chairman and managing director, Shraddha Lifescapes.

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