AUDA lays foundation for a vertical city

The skyline of Ahmedabad is set to change. In the coming days, multi-storied structures having as many as 22 floors will come up as per the provisions of the new Development Plan (DP) unveiled for the city on Friday.

The plan — unveiled by the Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority (AUDA) — not only proposes the creation of a new "affordable housing zone" for the city, but also permits builders to build as high as 70 metres on Ashram Road, which is being proposed to be turned into a Central Business District (CBD).

"Ahmedabad's population is estimated at 79 lakh by 2021. Hence, in the reforms introduced... the next decade of Ahmedabad's growth is directed towards making it a compact city. We want to keep the city level infrastructure and growth at par, so that it does not create a sprawl or haphazard development," said an AUDA official.

AUDA has raised the Floor Space Index (FSI) across different pockets of the city. The highest FSI — which is the ratio of a building's total floor area to the size of the parcel of land upon which it is built — of 5.4 has been permitted on Ashram Road over a five-km stretch from Usmanpura to Ellisbridge in length and from the Sabarmati riverbed to the Gandhigram railway station.

This means builders who used to build up to 40 metres will be able to raise their structure's height to a maximum of 70 metres.

"In the R1 zone (areas having high density of population), FSI has been increased from 1.8 to 2.7 while in the R2 zone (lower density of population), it has been increased from 1.2 to 1.8. Through zoning and new General Development Control Regulation (GDCR), builders will have to declare unit area, not super built-up area... The accountability of builders will increase as they will have to give all their maintenance plans for Building Use (BU) permission. This will definitely bring down prices and stabilise the market," said D Thara, CEO of AUDA.

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