Master plan for neighbouring district shelved to facilitate expansion of CMA

The Chennai Metropolitan Area (CMA) is all set to make inroads into a chunk of the proposed Chengalpattu Composite Local Planning Area. To facilitate the expansion of the Chennai Metropolitan Area (CMA), the Housing and Urban Development Department has shelved the proposal of the Directorate of Town and Country Planning (DTCP) to create a composite Local Planning Area for Chengalpattu. However, a similar proposal for expansion of the Local Planning Area for Kancheepuram by including 25 more villages was approved and notified by the government in December 2011.

Here is a composite map illustrating the expansion of the Chennai Metropolitan Area.

The government had earlier announced that the Chengalpattu Local Planning Area covering the municipality of Chengalpattu would be converted into a Composite Local Planning Area (LPA) in 2011-2012 in order to create separate Master Plan for the rapidly developing area comprising 128 villages of Chengalpattu Taluk and its municipal limits. This proposal for a composite LPA for Chengalpattu excluded 55 villages under Mamallapuram Local Planning Authority and two villages of Mamallapuram New Town Development Authority.

The idea of a separate master plan for Chengalpattu was proposed to regulate the rapid urban development on the Southern suburbs of Chennai. Even though building norms pertaining to Floor Space Index and set back are in place in the 128 villages included in the proposed Chengalpattu LPA, funding for major infrastructure projects was not forthcoming without a master plan.

The master plan is also crucial for planned zoning of land use covering residential, commercial or industrial. Demarcation of land use zones is yet to be done in the 128 villages across the area lying between Vandalur and Chengalpattu. Land use zones would put a stop to the unplanned development of hazardous industries near newly developing residential or commercial areas. As a number of villages in the area are witnessing rapid development with only building norms in place, many residential areas are inadvertently being developed in proximity to industries which may create problems in the long run. Consequently the DTCP was in a rush to create a master plan for Chengalpattu and had sent the proposal to government. Now, the opportunity for Chengalpattu to experience a planned urban development may also be delayed if the expansion of the CMA consumes time.

The existing Chennai Metropolitan Area (CMA) covers an area of 1,189 sq km and the expanded CMA would grow beyond Vandalur-Kelambakkam Road towards the south. Most of Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts would be part of the expanded CMA.

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