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Govt moots 'TDR' to protect eco areas.


Date: 20-04-2017
Subject: Govt moots 'TDR' to protect eco areas
Panaji: The Goa government has mooted the concept of transfer of development rights (TDR) in a bid to protect and conserve eco-sensitive areas, salt pans, mangroves, and even heritage homes.

The issue was discussed at a meeting of town and country planning department, which was attended by the chief minister Manohar Parrikar, town and country planning minister Vijai Sardesai, and senior officers of the department on Wednesday.

TDR is a concept to allow land or property owners to sell development rights to a builder or others, whereby they can construct higher buildings with extra floor area ratio in special cases. Heritage property owners cannot freely use their development right in conservation zones, and hence they can sell and earn money as compensation for the loss.

“In general, all lands in Goa will get credit. You can encash it in the form of floor area ratio (FAR),” Sardesai said.

Sardesai speaking to TOI explained that if a property owner has 1,000sqm land in eco-sensitive zone (ECZ) or salt pan, under the RP, the occupant/owner usually tries to get it converted, as otherwise he gets no commercial value. But, under the TDR concept, he will be given rights for higher FAR wherein he can encash it to some builder, provided the saltpan or property in SEZ or conservation zone remains untouched and is preserved.

“Basically, we are thinking of providing incentive to conserve our heritage — whether it is saltpans, mangroves or heritage house,” Sardesai said.

He said the chief minister has asked for a report from the TCP, which will study and present a detailed report on how to go about it.

A piecemeal approach of allowing heritage buildings to be knocked down to compensate owners is posing a serious threat to the unique conservation zones.

The recently rolled out outline development plans (ODPs) for Panaji, Mapusa and a few other towns by the planning and development authorities (PDAs) could spell doom for heritage buildings in urban areas.

Heritage activists say the state will have to earmark some areas to pursue the TDR concept, where TDR rights can be sold to compensate owners.

Source: The Times Of India

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