MUMBAI: Confusion over implementation of the new development control regulations (DCR 2034) has brought construction approvals to a standstill in the BMC’s building proposals department since September 1, according to builders and architects.
Although the civic administration denied it, construction industry sources said junior level engineers are not processing building files because of lack of clarity. From September 1, DCR 2034 replaced the old DCR of 1991. But the rules of the new DCR are yet to be implemented. A senior architect told TOI that 55% of the rules are yet to be framed. This is largely because some of the clauses of DCR 2034 are in Excluded Portion (EP), which are yet to be sanctioned.
Architects who spoke to this newspaper said department officials are unsure which building rules to apply at the moment.
The biggest setback is for builders with half-finished projects, whose work commenced under DCR 1991. “When they go for further permissions to complete their buildings, they are asked to come under the new rules. It is not possible to follow the stipulations of the new 2034 DCR, especially when you have just one or two floors of the building to complete,” said a source in the real estate industry. A developer said it would be difficult to comply with the conditions stipulated in the new DCR at a stage when his building is almost complete.
Another prominent developer said the building proposals department was not even accepting premium payments for construction concessions. “I have to pay Rs 50 crore as premium for my project, but it’s all in limbo,” the developer told TOI.
Sources said the state government should have come up with a transition policy for projects that commenced under the old 1991 DCR and are now stuck due to the new 2034 DCR.
“Since the past two weeks, there’s a total shutdown in the BMC’s building proposals department. Junior level officials do not know what to do,” said a prominent architect.
BMC chief engineer (development plan) Sanjay Darade said he has held meetings with his engineers and given instructions on how to scrutinise the proposals. “There is no issue at all. It is for the builders to submit their proposals,” he said.
Darade said the more stringent of the two DCRs will apply to building proposals in transition. Early this week, the BMC issued a circular that all proposals will now be processed as per the new DCR through the online system.
The BMC initiated the development plan of 2034 and published the draft DP on February 25, 2015. However, since there were a lot of anomalies, it was scrapped by the government. The second draft DP along with DC regulations was published in May 2016 and suggestions and objections were called. The final plan was published on May 8, with some of the clauses added in Excluded Portion (EP), which was not sanctioned and further suggestions and objections were called for.
“Since September 1, there are many Excluded Portions within the new plan. There is chaos in the entire building proposal department and no approval is being granted in the zonal offices, even to developers who have made payment of crores to BMC. All approvals such as IOD, CC, further CC are stuck,” said a developer.