The Haryana cabinet is expected to consider an amendment to the Transit Oriented Development (ToD) policy on Monday regarding permitted land use in the ToD area for institutional sites. These institutional sites are part of delineated development areas – both by licensed developers and in Haryana Shehri Vikas Pradhikaran (HSVP) areas.
The proposed amendment appears to be controversial as there are not many institutional sites/internal community buildings in the state that meet the standards prescribed in the proposed amendment. Also, the ToD policy already covers institutional zones.
The proposed amendment means in a nutshell that internal community buildings, including schools, healthcare facilities, religious buildings, and community centers, can be altered and operated for commercial purposes.
In addition, the department, in accordance with its own 2021 guidelines, will need to ensure that developers have invited objections from each existing assignee to a change in development/building plan.
What is transit-oriented development?
The ToD policy introduced by the Department of Land Use Planning (TCP) in 2016 is basically any macro or micro development that concentrates along a rapid transit corridor and facilitates access to the transport facility by public transport, thus allowing people to prefer to walk and use public transport rather than personal modes of transport. In accordance with existing policy, permitted uses in the ToD zone for mixed land use (residential and commercial only) and a floor area ratio (FAR) of 3.5/2.5 are up to 30% of residential component in settlements permitted in commercial areas and up to 30% commercial component in residential, industrial and institutional areas of development plans.
The proposed amendment
The cabinet memorandum proposing an amendment from the TCP Department stated that in the case of such sites for internal community buildings forming part of plotted settlements, which are also within a transit oriented development area, the benefit of the policy can be used if the area of such an internal community building is not less than four acres.
He further stated that the maximum FAR of 3.5 / 2.5 (depending on the transition zone) will be allowed. The minimum FAR to be allocated to the designated institutional objective will be in accordance with the standards in force at the time of the approval of the management plan. Significantly, the cabinet memorandum also stated that the balance of the FAR, after setting aside a minimum area for institutional use, can be used for a mixed-use development – 70% residential and 30% commercial.
He also stated that if the applicant intends to use the entire area for mixed land use on the institutional site and it is not possible to adapt the institutional use according to the development plan approved elsewhere (in the same development plan), then the option to relocate such internal community site within 3 km within the conforming development zone will also be permitted.
‘No explicit provision in ToD for institutional sites’
Justifying the proposed amendment, the TCP department in the cabinet memorandum said: “Since there are no explicit provisions for the granting of ToD clearance on institutional sites/internal community buildings under a area other than the public and semi-public institutional area or the area reserved for institutions in the area plans and forming part of the parcel settlements, HSVP residential areas falling within the ToD area and forming part of the approved development housing plan , modifications are necessary to allow the benefit of the ToD on these institutional sites.
Additional Chief Secretary, TCP, Devender Singh declined to comment on the implications of the proposed amendment, saying the cabinet would take a call on it.