BBMP to scale 583 high-rises

BBMP to scale 583 high-rises

The BBMP has decided to re-inspect 583 high-rise buildings that were issued occupancy certificates (OC) in the last five years by the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), which has no powers to inspect the buildings for violation.

After a long-drawn debate, the Palike Standing Committee on Town Planning on Tuesday finally approved recalling of all files pertaining to the OC issued by the BDA since 2007.

With the latest decision, the Palike has apparently enhanced its revenue-generating avenues. The cash-starved BBMP could now collect penalty for building byelaw violations, which are below 5 per cent, from these high-rises. Sources in the Palike said a “compounding fee” would be levied on buildings found with violations.

“The fee will vary as per the violations in setback, floor-area ratio (FAR) and so on,” said the source.   It is estimated that the compounding fee will yield up to Rs 350 crore for the BBMP.

The Palike will soon write to the  BDA seeking the return of the files related to all the 583 buildings. The BBMP Council’s approval will be sought to formally pass an order to this effect, to be executed by the Palike Commissioner.

It is learnt that already 116 of these 583 buildings have been issued notices for building byelaw violations by the Palike’s zonal commissioners.  Sources said some had even started to come forward to pay the compounding fee. “The pressure will be on the builders once the files pertaining to the OCs are reviewed by the Town Planning Department,” they said.

The Town Planning Committee has also decided to make it compulsory for the owners of sites measuring 50’ X 80’ (4,000 sqft) and above to obtain an OC. Sources said this compulsory clause will boost the Palike’s revenue since scores of three- and four-storey buildings are constructed on sites of that dimension.

Another key decision of the committee is to collect road cutting charges from site owners of 30x40 (1,200 sqft) and 40x60 (2,400 sqft), while issuing fresh building plans.

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