Ten years down the line, the DMK government under M K Stalin will have to carry the burden of implementing projects recommended in the second master plan as it starts groundwork for a third master plan to be launched by 2026.
Previous DMK governments authored two master plans – in 1976 and 2008 – for the development of Chennai and its neighbourhoods, besides suggesting infrastructure projects, a land use map to earmark institutional, industrial and residential areas that should be created in the next two decades in view of the population growth. Inner Ring Road (Jawaharlal Nehru Road), Intermediate Ring Road (Chennai Bypass Road), Outer Ring Road, CMBT and MRTS were products of the first master plan.
After ignoring the master plan, the previous government went ahead to promote vertical development, which made the core areas of the city congested.
R Radhakrishnan, former national president of Builders Association of India, said, “The crisis faced by the city could have been averted had at least 50% of the recommendations in the second master plan been implemented. Now, the cost of the projects s u g – gested has escalated.”
The need of the hour is to promote horizontal and uniform development, say, urban development experts. As it is,a state government’s prerogative to give a push, they expect radical proposals on FSI and TDR fronts.
K P Subramanian, former professor of urban engineering at Anna University, said the city with numerous high-rise apartments has problems with overconcentration of population, water scarcity, overflowing sewers, traffic congestion, pollution, safety and security.
“All the same, horizontal developments don’t mean uncontrolled urban spread leading to unwieldy urban growth. The most desirable urban form is ‘high dense and low rise’ developments, striking a delicate balance with the density,” he added.
Housing and urban development minister S Muthusamy said projects recommended in the CMDA’s second master plan would soon be taken up for a discussion.