The Maharashtra government seems to be under pressure from the World Bank and Centre to improve the global `Ease of Doing Business’ ranking.But in its haste to speed up construction permission, it has evoked incredulity and smirks in the real estate industry .The latest is a notification from the state urban development department, allowing architects to self-certify and approve their own projects instead of rushing to the civic administration with their proposals.
Bizarrely , such buildings that can be approved are only groundplus-one storey structures, which has caused much mirth among Mumbai architects who mostly design highrises in the city.
They said the entire purpose of making clearances simpler is defeated because this rule will apply only to bungalows and not towers. In Mumbai, the civic building proposals department is believed to be notoriously corrupt, although civic chief Ajoy Mehta and senior officials have attempted to clean up the department.
The March 2 state government notification meant to expe dite the building approval system, said architects can approve buildings with heights of between 3.9m and 8.4m. These are mainly ground-plus-one storey buildings for residential, commercial and industrial purposes. The categories of structures have been enlisted as `low-risk’ and `moderate-risk’ buildings. The land on which they can be built must be vacant. Industry sources said in Mumbai, most projects are redevelopment projects where a structure already exists. Low-risk buildings have been defined as those with a height varying from 3.9m to 4.2m. Moderate-risk structures have been categorized as those having heights of 3.9m to 8.4m.
For low-risk buildings, architects registered with the Council of Architecture and Licensed Surveyors registered with the BMC will be entitled to certify such buildings. For moderaterisk buildings, architects registered with Council of Architecture and Licensed Surveyors registered with BMC, and who have obtained at least ten occupation certificates building completion certificates or both, will be entitled to certify them.
“The proposal shall be only on vacant plot and it shall not be affected by buffer zones of Railways, MMRDA, defence, coastal regulation zone etc,” said the notification. The process of plinth checking and monitoring of the work will be the responsibility of architects. The architect will be authorized to issue approval plans and approval letter with digital signature. The architect needs to submit periodical site progress and inspection report to the BMC. On completion of work, the architect will submit the completion plans to the BMC. They will be held responsible in case of any building violation or deviation from the approved plan.