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Two years on, Smart City projects set to take shape

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The Hindu         24.05.2017    

Two years on, Smart City projects set to take shape

This year, Chennai will spend around Rs. 100 crore to give itself a makeover

Two years after Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Smart Cities Mission, its implementation is likely to kick off in the city. Key smart city projects are likely to be cleared for administrative sanction by the Board of Directors of Chennai Smart City Ltd. on Wednesday, said sources in the Chennai Corporation.

Wednesday’s meeting will be the fourth board meeting of Chennai Smart City Ltd. The previous three meetings did not clear any proposal. Slated to cost Rs. 85 crore, the key projects to be cleared include constructing a new multi-level car parking facility, redevelopment of eight parks, redesigning of 23 roads, and development of a pedestrian plaza.

“Other important projects such as a traffic management system and phase 2 and 3 of the Pedestrian Plaza in T.Nagar will be implemented later. A detailed project report for many of the projects will be ready soon,” said an official.

Challenges to the implementation of Smart City Mission projects include opposition from traders in T.Nagar, hurdles in revision of parking charges for the city, implementation of Metro Rail project, lack of interest among other stakeholders in the private sector to support the projects, inadequate funding for smart city proposals and resettlement of hawkers. This year Chennai is likely to spend only around Rs. 100 crore for projects under the Smart City Mission.

The multi-level car parking can accommodate 230 cars and 550 two-wheelers, but there is a hitch. The corporation can’t collect charges for motorcycles, as per an existing government order. It can collect only Rs. 5 per hour for cars. This makes operation and maintenance of the multi-level parking facility an expensive proposition. The government has to revise the parking fee, an official said, adding that this would be discussed in the board meeting. Work on redevelopment of Panagal Park has been shelved due to the Metro Rail project in the area and civic officials expect a few other proposals in the city to be hit by subsequent phases of the Metro Rail.

41 projects

Officials say that at least 41 Smart City projects are expected to be implemented at an estimated cost of Rs. 1,300 crore in the city in the years to come. But implementation of many of these projects including 24x7 supply of water in T.Nagar is likely to be a challenge as a number of unauthorised buildings dot the city’s commercial district, officials say.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 24 May 2017 10:33
 

CMDA eyes fourth site for truck terminal

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The New Indian Express     12.05.2017 

CMDA eyes fourth site for truck terminal

CHENNAI: Two years after then Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa announced in the Assembly that a truck terminal will be built at Ernavoor, Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) is still struggling to find land and has now zeroed in on a fourth site in neighbouring Tiruvallur district.

CMDA had earlier selected three locations for the `160 crore project. The first one was in Ernavoor. It was shelved as the land was being considered for developing a housing project for flood-affected families by the State housing board.

The second site was within  Sathangadu Iron and Steel Market, which was opposed by traders. Later,  planners advocated 66 acres of marsh land opposite the Sathangadu Iron and Steel Market, which was considered as a water course.

The third site now requires clearance from Public Works Department (PWD). The Tiruvallur Collector in the report has said that the opinion of PWD should be obtained after which the iron bridge on the site and waterway should be strengthened and widened to ensure free flow of water or else there is a threat of back water inundating the low-lying areas of Sathangadu.

Now, CMDA is eyeing the possibility of having it at Sadayankuppan in Tiruvallur district. Classified as ‘meikal poromboke’ (grassland), the 56.85 acres land has only 17 acres that is vacant. CMDA wants to club three acres to make it 20 acres for the project, sources said. The land is on Tiruottriyur-Ponneri Pancheti Road and has to be alienated in favour of CMDA. It is learnt that CMDA has requested the Collector for acquisition of the land.

 

CMDA to relax height curbs soon

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The Hindu          03.05.2017 

CMDA to relax height curbs soon

CMDA has decided to increase the floor height to 3.5 metres.File photo  

To promote better use of technology

The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) has decided to relax the restrictions in the height of buildings to facilitate construction of buildings with higher ceiling, better ventilation, improved aesthetics and better use of technology.

“The CMDA has made a decision to increase the floor height to 3.5 metres. The government has to make a final decision on amending the development regulations. The decision is expected shortly,” said a CMDA official.

Currently, the planning authorities permit higher ceiling only for multi-storied and special buildings, while other buildings such as institutions and industries are unable to build rooms with higher ceilings if they are not categorised as multi-storied buildings or special buildings.

“Owing to the restrictions in height, the height from floor to a ceiling cannot be more than 2.95 metres now. After the amendment of the development regulations, the height can go up to 3.5 metres, offering better ventilation,” said the official.

As per the existing provisions of the development regulations in Chennai Metropolitan Area, if the height of a building measured from the ground level is 15.25 metres, such building will not be considered a multi-storied building.

Multi-storied buildings are those exceeding four floors with at least 15.25 metres in height. Once the amendments come, buildings with a height of 17 metres would be classified as institutional buildings or industrial buildings. In case of hospitals, however, buildings not exceeding four floors with a height of 17 metres are already classified as non multi-storied buildings.

 
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