In a move that could spur development in urban areas, the Government of Andhra Pradesh has decided to develop suburban areas with required civic infrastructure. The Municipal Administration Department has readied a blueprint to make suburban areas into smart cities. Interestingly, the State Government has decided to offer house sites to the middle and upper-middle income groups at reasonable prices in the layouts to be readied by the municipal administration department. The plans will be rolled out after the completion of municipal elections.
The urban development authorities (UDAs), which used to handle real estate business by readying layouts with civic infrastructure, would be pressed into resume the business afresh. The UDAs have stopped handling the layout business despite success in many towns and cities. Sources said that the UDAs had confined themselves to the regulating authority to clear the plans for the layouts due to pressure from influential real estate firms.
The UDAs had failed to play the role of enforcement authority to curb illegal and unauthorized ventures by private parties. This resulted in many middle and upper-middle income groups being duped by fake and illegal real estate firms.
Hundreds of housing layouts that have come up on the outskirts of the existing towns and cities have remained idle due to lack of civic infrastructure. “The dreams of the middle-class of owning a house were shattered by the civic bodies which could not act fast enough to expand the infrastructure in the outskirts, leading to high stress on land values within the towns and cities. This can be changed only when the basic infrastructure is available in the outskirts,” said Dr Razaq Mohammed, an urban planner.
Chief minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has noticed the gap between the aspirations of the middle-class and the reality with regard to land value, particularly in urban areas.
In order to bring down high land prices, the chief minister has directed the municipal administration department to develop layouts to offer house sites to the middle-class on a no-profit no-loss basis.