Pressure tactics adopted by the builder lobby and their sympathisers from the political circuit notwithstanding, Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan is set to announce the policy of redevelopment for 56 MHADA colonies in the city, where the state wants to increase its housing stock.
Sources in the government said to make proposals more attractive, the current cap of permissible floor space index (FSI) 2.5 would be raised to 3. This might attract the builder lobby that has been after premium instead of raising the housing stock, thus stalling redevelopment of old and dilapidated colonies in the city.
They also claimed that of the FSI 3, a part would be utilised for the original occupants of the building undergoing redevelopment with 40 per cent extra that will make it almost FSI 1.4. From the remaining, FSI 0.3 will go towards the developer as an incentive and the rest of the FSI 1.2 would be allocated on 50:50-basis to MHADA and developers.
Sources claimed that a proposal is being mulled over to notify the housing body, as the planning authority for the 56 colonies, so that the areas can be developed as integrated localities. An official associated with development projects in the city said the government’s proposal is certain to upset the builder lobby, which is still pressing for premium instead of the housing stock.
Developers find it easy to offer premium to MHADA because such proposals attract huge profits. But the CM made it clear that MHADA was set up with the sole purpose of creating housing stock rather than minting money. Despite several attempts, the CM refused to entertain pleas forwarded by the builder lobby. Instead, Chavan was of the view that the additional housing stock is a must at a time when the middle-class was finding it difficult to purchase homes in the city.
To announce the policy, the state appointed a study group comprising senior government officials that analysed the pros and cons of the Section 33(5) of the Development Control Rules for Mumbai. Chavan had first mooted the idea of housing stock for the redevelopment proposals received after September 20, 2010, with FSI 2.5. But the proposal received hardly any response as it was termed as unattractive. However, FSI 3 could be the game-changer feel government officials.