BDA's revised RMP has no solution to commercialisation of residential areas

Despite repeated talks about rampant commercialisation in residential areas, few plans have been proposed to prevent it in the Bangalore Development Authority's draft revised master plan (RMP) of 2031, released recently.

Although the plan proposes to reduce the extent of commercial establishments in residential areas to some extent, there has been no specification or the methods that will be adopted for the same.

With more number of commercialisation complaints coming from Indiranagar and Koramangala, the draft RMP-2031 proposes 'restricting further commercialisation' and proposes to reduce the extent from 4.56% to 1.58% in the coming years.

However, the plan does not talk about the methods in which it has to be dealt with.

Vijayan Menon, from Citizens Action Forum, who has been actively fighting against the rampant commercialisation said: "The current master plan is all good on papers, but the time has come where they have to focus at the governance."

When it comes to Austin Town, Koramangala and HSR Layout, the report talks about 'stabilisation of commercialisation' and makes a single note of how to decrease the activity. It proposes to reduce the commercial activities by 'defining identified roads on which these activities can be allowed.'

Nithin Sheshadri, a representative of Koramangala Resident Welfare Association said: "The revised plan has not marked rajakaluves and setting up of schools in the area. It allows the establishment of Montessori schools. But there is no planning about the parking facilities which will result in congestion of roads. They have to take a holistic approach rather than looking at things in parts."

Another change in the revised plan is that, now roads that are 41 feet wide can be laid in a commercial establishment as against the earlier road width limit of 40 feet in 2015.

Rejeet Mathews, manager, urban development and accessibility, World Resource Institute, India and who has also closely worked with RMP-2015 in Bengaluru said: "There are a lot of gaps in the proposal as they are looking at dispersed growth strategy. The plan looks at developing the peripheral areas more than the Central Business District. The proposal cannot ignore the CBD as this is the heart of the state where most of the things related to the city as well as the state happen and planning this part is as important as planning the peripheral areas."

DH News service

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