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Budget 2019: Focus on Transit Oriented Development to spur commercial activities along corridors

ToDs are emerging as prominent hubs for commercial, retail, co-working and entertainment-oriented developments.

Source: Flickr
Source: Flickr

Budget 2019 seeks to provide an impetus to Transit Oriented Development, which is expected to lead to growth of commercial and industrial units along the new and existing transit corridors across the country.

"Indian Railways suburban and long-distance services do a phenomenal task in cities like Mumbai and smaller cities. Railways will be encouraged to invest more in suburban railways through Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) structures like Rapid Regional Transport System (RRTS) proposed on the Delhi-Meerut route. I propose to enhance the metro-railway initiatives by encouraging more PPP initiatives and ensuring completion of sanctioned works, while supporting Transit Oriented Development (TOD) to ensure commercial activity around transit hubs. We are in the process of completing the dedicated freight corridor project that will free up some of the existing railway network for passenger trains," Nirmala Sitharaman said in her speech.

She said 657 km of metro rail network has become operational across country while railway infrastructure will need Rs 50 lakh crore investment till 2030.


The TOD provision will lead to growth of commercial and industrial units along the new and existing corridors across the country, says Ramesh Nair, CEO & Country Head, JLL India

"The government's commitment to Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) such as Delhi-Meerut, as well as suburban and metro connectivity across the country will provide an impetus to transit-oriented developments (ToDs) across the country. These ToDs are emerging as prominent hubs for commercial, retail, coworking and entertainment-oriented developments, which also become a source of PPP revenue for the Government to fund such large infrastructure projects," said Aashish Agarwal, Senior Director, Valuation & Advisory at Colliers International India.

TOD is any macro or micro development focused around a transit node which results in improved ease of access to the transit facility. When done correctly, such developments encourage citizens to prefer walking and using public transportation over using private vehicles.

Globally, cities like Singapore and Hong Kong in Asia, Curitiba in Brazil, Stockholm in Sweden and Washington DC in the US have TOD as an integral element in their master planning, and integrated with their mass transport networks. The success and inherent inducements for growth that TOD delivers in these cities is remarkable. Around 26-30% of these countries’ populations - and the majority of their job centres - are along Metro corridors.

In cities like Delhi, Ahmedabad, Mumbai and Chennai now have extensive high-order transit options either in place or in the planning stage. BRT (Bus Rapid Transit), LRT (Light Rail Transit) and MRT (Metro Rail Transit) are actively exploring the TOD opportunities in these cities by exploiting higher FSI along transit corridors for developments.

TOD creates a balanced mix of land use through concentrated residential development at a walking distance of 500 to 800 m along the transit corridor, or from the transit station. This increases 'walkability', encourages public transport use and also makes 'last-mile' options such as cycle sharing systems much more viable.

While TOD puts urban lands to optimal use, the associated higher FSI, denser developments, bigger catchments and increased foot traffic help stabilize property prices and increase property tax revenues from the same land parcel for municipal corporations.

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First Published on Jul 5, 2019 06:52 pm
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