Chennai set for vertical, denser growth

Combined development, building rules applicable throughout State notified

Updated - July 11, 2021 06:16 pm IST

Published - February 05, 2019 01:17 am IST - CHENNAI

With the State government notifying the combined development and building rules on Monday, core parts of cities such as Chennai and Coimbatore are likely to witness greater vertical development and become denser in future.

Except for hilly areas, the rules are applicable uniformly to all other parts of the State, doing away with the existing system of separate sets of development and building rules followed by various local bodies and planning authorities.

Till now, provisions of laws on urban local bodies and rural local bodies, numbering 14, were adopted, apart from three sets of rules — Special rules for Multi-Storied Buildings, 1974; the Tamil Nadu Cyclone Prone Area Special Building Rules, 1982 and the Multi-storied and Public Building Rules, 1973.

In effect, the rules regarding planning and building permits have been made into single document.

More importantly, they have been simplified to “reduce discretion and promote voluntary compliance,” a senior government official said, adding that the rules have provided for higher floor space index (FSI) and premium FSI for all categories of buildings.

In another significant development, the rules mandate that industrial and institutional categories of buildings must provide for open space reservation (OSR), but it can be maintained without gifting it to the local authority concerned, subject to supervision and monitoring that the space is maintained as open space.

Cost reduction

S. Rama Prabhu, vice-chairman, Southern Centre of the Builders Association of India, said the main impact of the new rules would be the reduction of cost of flats in urban centres, as greater FSI is going to be allowed. “Hereafter, depending upon location, the cost of flats will go down from ₹ 500 per sq ft to ₹ 2,000 per sq ft,” he said, expressing the hope that this would give a fillip to the real estate sector.

Curtailing deviations

At the same time, the authorities have incorporated provisions to ensure that deviations in construction are curtailed.

“Inspections have been mandated during construction at the plinth level and at the last storey level,” Mr Rama Prabhu pointed out. Based on risk assessment, inspections can be outsourced to registered professionals.

To promote mixed use development, the primary residential use zone and mixed residential use zone have been combined. Special sanction provisions to permit activities in each zone, available in the Chennai Metropolitan Area, are removed to “reduce discretionary decision making.”

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