Discussions, feedback make it a long process

New Delhi: To a common man it seems strange that years are spent in drawing and reviewing the master plan but Delhi Development Authority (DDA), the city’s planning agency, says making the ‘vision document’ is a mammoth task. Decisions are taken after a lot of discussion between experts and implemented only after seeking and incorporating the public’s views.

DDA had formed 12 sub-groups of experts from various fields to discuss the city’s development and growing requirements of shelter, traffic and transportation, trade and commerce, etc.

More than 200 experts took two years to prepare the draft of Master Plan for Delhi 2021 after the Union urban development ministry commissioned it in 2003. Each group had academicians, experts working on the ground and government representatives. “They submitted their recommendations after reviewing sectoral studies and current problems like the commercialization of residential areas,” said a senior DDA official.

Experts say the main objective of MPD-2021 was to address the city’s growing needs while conserving the environment and heritage.

After the draft plan was notified in March 2005, DDA received more than 7,000 suggestions and objections from the public. “Close to 90% of the suggestions were related to property. We incorporated the suggestions for the city’s development and sent them to our advisory council for approval,” a DDA official said.

Finalizing a master plan after incorporating the public’s suggestions takes a long time. The draft plan is vetted by various committees for legal and technical issues before it is sent to the Union urban development ministry which notifies it after receiving the Cabinet’s approval.

“The entire exercise for preparing a draft plan is repeated after the public’s suggestions are incorporated. That is why it takes years,” said the official.

The same process is followed to notify a revised master plan. The revision started in early-2012 and the government is notifying the changes in phases. DDA officials say more than 100 amendments have already been made to MPD-2021. The urban development ministry is in the process of finalizing the last chapter on environment, which will be posted for people’s suggestions and objections soon. Sources say the review is likely to end by December.

Source: Times Of India
Dated: 2nd September 2015

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