The master plan under preparation for Coimbatore will incorporate proposals for mass transport systems like metro rail, mono rail or Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS), according to K. Phanindra Reddy, Secretary, Housing & Urban Development, Tamil Nadu Government.

While there were no complaints of delay in processing of applications for building plan approvals here, he said the number of applications filed had gone up and auto DCR (Development Control Rules) was under preparation.

Responding to questions from newsmen here after inaugurating the ‘Fairpro 2012’, the property exhibition organised by the Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Association of India (Credai), Coimbatore, he said the master plan for the city was being prepared. The issue of public transport and to what extent facilities like metro rail, mono rail or BRTS could be provided would be mentioned in the master plan.

On the question of fast-tracking the processing of building plan applications, Reddy said no specific complaints of slow processing had been received. The number of applications filed had gone up and auto DCR was under preparation. (A builder explained that the Government wanted to encourage filing of applications for building plan approvals online or through CDs).

Inaugurating the three day property show, he said the credit for Coimbatore getting the best corporation award in the State (Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa presented the award on the Independence Day at Chennai) belonged not only to the city managers but to the people of the city. He said “no amount of rule making” could result in better environment, better management “unless rule obedience, rule compliance is widespread” and the “need for enforcement is minimal”. This explained why the western part of Tamil Nadu, particularly Coimbatore, was more successful, he said.

The State Housing Secretary said as responsible citizens the developers were as much stakeholders as the Government in ensuring “sustainable urban development”. To be sustainable, urban development has to “ensure environmental sustainability, resource sustainability and social sustainability”. If the developers had their eyes only on their profitability numbers, then the commitment for the future of the city, love for it would not be there. He wanted the `front ending’ to be done by the people constituting the city.

Reddy, lauding the double-digit growth of the real estate sector, said if this were to be sustained, the public transport should be improved. He said cities like Singapore have made significant investment in public transport even while making private transport expensive. He felt that the private vehicle users should be made to pay for the road space they occupied for travel, parking and the pollution they caused and the funds generated should be used for improving public transport.

He said his department was open to receiving suggestions from Credai, Institute of Architecture and the Institute of Town Planners to “improve our planning processes, improve our planning parameters and to expedite our planning permissions”.

Madan Lund, Chairman, FAIRPRO 2012, said the latest edition of property show has more space and more number of participants. The property show would also host sessions on new materials being used in construction, particularly green buildings, legal issues to be considered while investing in properties and on aspects of ‘Vasthu’ which would be addressed by experts in the respective areas.

P. Karthikeyan, President, Credai, Coimbatore, and Omkar Sankar, Secretary, Credai, Coimbatore, spoke.

(This article was published on August 17, 2012)
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