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Jolted by criticism, DDA to offer ‘best-ever’ apartments in 2018
Hindustan Times  |  July 17, 2017

Abhinav Rajput

Swanky multilevel underground parking, rainwater harvesting units, buildings touted to withstand an earthquake of 8.5 on Richter scale and spacious bedrooms — all this and much more are in the offing in the Delhi Development Authority’s (DDA) housing scheme 2018.


Losing out to private builders in the National Capital Region, the Delhi Development Authority is adopting the latest building norms and offering better amenities in its next lot of flats in 2018 to give buyers a better experience.


The new apartments, DDA officials said, would be a benchmark for all its future projects to ensure that no one returns flats after allotment. Buyers returned at least 8,000 flats in the 2014 scheme because of the lack of basic amenities.


The authority is constructing 215 higher income group (HIG) flats in south-east Delhi’s Jasola Vihar — earthquake-resistant green buildings built with flyash bricks. They have local sewage treatment plant, rain water harvesting units, RO (reverse osmosis) -treated drinking water and multilevel underground parking.


A senior DDA official said that in a three-tier in-house water management model, water from the in-campus sewage treatment plants can be used in urinals and for horticulture, those generated from rain water harvesting can be used for bathing and in kitchen, and RO-treated water for drinking.


“DDA officials held a series of meetings after the 2014 scheme, when many houses were rejected. We couldn’t have done major changes in the flats that were already in construction, but with this project, we want the DDA to reclaim its position of providing best houses at affordable rates,” said a DDA official.


Once coveted and much sought after, the DDA flats are losing the competition to private developers that are providing better amenities at lower rates in the National Capital Region.


Out of the 25,000 flats auctioned in 2014, nearly 8,500 allottees surrendered their apartments citing reasons such as size constraints and lack of infrastructure. These were mostly in Dwarka, Rohini and Narela, and have been put up for sale again this year.


In the Jasola Vihar model project, the agency says it has made the walls and ceilings waterproof. Waterproofing sheets will prevent seepage.


There are facilities for support staff and 1,100 car-parking units, which means there will be three slots for each house.


Besides, these 14-floor apartments are said to be the first-of its-kind, in which just 20% of the area is being used for the buildings. The remaining part has parking, play areas and parks.


The agency plans to focus more on high-rise apartments to cater to the maximum number of people due to paucity of land.


These flats, constructed in a carpet area of 100 square metres, with room sizes of around 16x14 feet, and a balcony and a bathroom attached with each bedroom, follows the National Building Code - 2016.


The code ensures correct spots for building columns, parking norms and height of the buildings corresponding to the floor area ratio. There are proper measures for evacuation in case of fire and emergency.


The development authority also claims that the buildings built with the latest earthquake resistant technology (IS13920, IS456 and IS13920) can endure earthquakes up to 8.5 Richter scale.