Long-term loans for building ring roads

In a bid to encourage urban local bodies to take up construction of ring roads in towns and cities, the Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation (KUIDFC) will provide long term loans for project development and financing.

Speaking at a workshop on ‘Innovations in Urban Planning’ organised by the State government, KUIDFC Managing Director Harsh Gupta said the urban local bodies (ULBs) can make use of the loans for project survey and implementation with a pay back option ranging between 10 and 15 years.

“A government order giving effect to the scheme will be issued within the next few days. The ULBs can levy betterment charges in their respective jurisdictions to repay the loan,” Gupta said. The officer pointed out that ring roads will pave way for planned systematic development of towns. The scheme is also likely to help ULBs tide over the hurdles in getting immediate financing of their projects.

Advisor to the chief minister on urban affairs A Ravindra stressed the need for replacing the Karnataka Town and Country Planning Act with a new legislation which is more inclusive. “We need to go beyond mere physical planning of cities and include social and economic issues. Several issues like migration, urban poverty and energy efficiency, building regulations need to be tackled,” he said. The provisions of Urban and Regional Planning and Development Bill proposed soon after the 74th amendment to the Constitution need to be brought into force, he felt. Additional Chief Secretary Subir Hari Singh sought use of technology on a larger scale in urban planning.

A presentation on ‘Town Planning Scheme (TPS)’  in Gujarat evoked keen response from the participants of the workshop, mostly town planners and officials of the urban development department.

The TPS approach does not involve acquisition of land. There is no notification or denotification of land. Instead developed land is offered to the original owners of land after deducting for roads and civic amenities. In his presentation on “TPS: Innovative practices in Gujarat,” Vatsal Patel, a town planner in Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, said 203 TPSs including a 76-km ring road have been implemented so far.

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