Govt dilutes cluster scheme for Mumbai, projects allowed on narrower roads

Written by Sandeep A Ashar | Mumbai | Updated: November 20, 2020 10:34:53 am

maharashtra chief minister uddhav thackeray, shiv sena thackeray, maharashtra dussehra shiv senaMaharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray (File)

DEVELOPERS IN Mumbai will soon be able to undertake redevelopment of a cluster of buildings on narrower roads. A decade after the cluster development scheme (CDS) was first introduced in Mumbai for expediting planned redevelopment of old and dilapidated cessed buildings, the state government has now diluted a key planning norm while hiking the sale incentives for developers undertaking these projects.

Dovetailing the buildable area incentives with the road width to avoid development of pencil-thin structures, the existing policy allows implementation of such schemes only for arrears served by roads that are at least 60 feet or 18.3-m wide.

But on Wednesday, the state’s Urban Development Department (UDD) issued a notification empowering the Mumbai civic commissioner to allow cluster development scheme even for areas served by roads that are 12mor less than 40 feet wide.

“The commissioner may consider to allow CDS on a plot having access from a 12-m wide road, depending on the availability, not a 18.3-m wide road within the vicinity of 500 meters from the scheme,” the notification read. Under the CDS, developers can undertake redevelopment of buildings and structures spread over a minimum area of 4,000 sq metre (43,000 sq feet) in the island city and a minimum area of 6,000 sq metre (64,500 sq feet)in the suburbs.

With a high floor space index of four times the gross plot area available for the development, officials said the original condition of a minimum width of 60 feet for the abutting road was imposed that the new development does not burden the existing local infrastructure. While the government is yet to give its final nod to the modification and has invited suggestions and objections from the public, senior sources said a leading real estate firm, which is implementing more than one CDS projects in the island city, will be the immediate beneficiary of the modification. The government has permitted ongoing schemes the option of migrating to the proposed new policy. The government has heightened sale incentives for developers by nearly 30 per cent, while also relaxing some other planning norms and lowering some construction premiums.

At present, a CDS can be implemented only for cessed buildings that are over 30 years old, but the new policy also permits inclusion of buildings already reconstructed by the state housing board (MHADA) that are less than 30 years of age. The cluster scheme was first introduced in Mumbai in March 2009. A revised policy was approved in December, 2013.

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