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“Raise floor space index for multi-storeyed apartments”

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APPEAL: K. Shanmugam, Assistant Director for Town and Country Planning, addressing a meeting in the city.
APPEAL: K. Shanmugam, Assistant Director for Town and Country Planning, addressing a meeting in the city.

Staff Reporter

It is less in Tamil Nadu when compared to other States, says builders’ forum

MADURAI: Builders’ Association of India has urged the State Government to increase the floor space index for multi-storeyed residential apartments from the current 1.5 to 2.5.

Its past national vice-president A. Puhazhendi said that floor space index (ratio of floor space of the building to the size of the land) in Tamil Nadu was very less when compared to neighbouring States like Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.

In the wake of increasing cost of land, flat promoters were only violating the rules because they were not economical with the current index, he said. “If the index is increased to 2.5, the Government could eliminate violations in buildings.”

The cost of the projects increased at a lower floor space index, which was passed on to the buyers. Besides, the limitation on vertical development only led to “stealing of agricultural land” for the purpose of construction, the association past national president, V. Ramachandran, said.

The association also wanted the Government to ensure that building plan approvals for flats were given within a time limit. “Whereas the approvals were being given within 90 days in neighbouring States, sometimes it takes more than one year in Tamil Nadu,” Mr. Puhazhendi, said. The delay resulted in increase in capital and interest on capital.

M.V. Marudhachalam, past chairman of Tiruchirapalli Flat Promoters’ Association said the local planning authority should be delegated powers to give approval for building plans with at least 35 to 40 flats. “Now any application for approval for buildings with more than 12 dwelling units has to be forwarded to the Director of Town and Country Planning,” he said.

At an interactive meeting, Assistant Director for Town and Country Planning K. Shanmugam said that efforts were being taken by ELCOT to create a software for digital processing of building plan approval.

This would make the process more transparent and simultaneous process by the local planning authority and the Directorate would be possible. The department had been taking various efforts to simplify the procedures.

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