Pune Real Estate – The Importance Of Green Cover In Residential Zones

It is generally known that abundant urban green spaces – large areas allocated to trees, lawns and all types of flora and fauna – are a major contributor to high quality living environment. Sufficient green spaces in cities improve the quality of the air in residential areas because trees absorb pollutants such as ozone, nitric acid vapour, ammonia, nitrogen, carbon monoxide and sulphur dioxide. In turn, they provide life-giving oxygen, provide shade, attract rain and improve the aesthetic quality of the whole area.

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In its heyday, Pune was renowned for its generous urban green spaces. Unfortunately, the hammer of commercialized real estate proliferation has caused most of the city’s green cover to vanish. Coupled with the massive traffic movement within the PMC limits, it is not surprising that so many Punekars now suffer from various ‘mysterious’ ailments. High blood pressure, asthma, bronchitis, energy depletion and depression are rapidly becoming common-place. The city that once rivaled Bangalore with its generous urban green spaces is now literally oxygen starved.

When the PCNTDA (Pimpri Chinchwad New Town Development Authority) set out to plan the residential zones in Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation – Pune’s prosperous sister city – the vital factor of green cover was a main priority. Not many are aware of how much thought went into the real estate blueprint for Pimpri-Chinchwad, which is now a masterpiece of systematic residential zone development. Thanks to close collaboration with healthcare officials, construction and civil engineering agencies and the town planning authorities ensured that PCMC would remain a predominantly green zone. The rationale was based on firm scientific facts:

  • People who live in residential zones with abundant green cover suffer fewer health problems and experience lower stress levels
  • The survival rate of senior citizens who spend their Golden Years in green surroundings is far higher than that of their contemporaries living in the concrete jungles of the inner city
  • Green cover in a residential zone encourages its residents to spend more time outdoors and show lower preference to an unhealthy sedentary lifestyle
  • The happiness level and mental/emotional health quotient of any residential community is directly related to the extent to which individuals socialize. The availability of green areas such as parks, gardens and lawns encourages more inter-personal contact between residents

By now, social scientists know for a fact that urban green spaces tend to attracts people outside their homes and to interact with each other. Parks and gardens are places where people can meet and spend time together in the outdoors. People who have access to green spaces in cities like Pune enjoy a higher level of social activity, tend to know their neighbours and are more concerned about the general welfare of the community.

Despite the rapid depletion of urban green spaces within the Pune Municipal Limits, Pimpri-Chinchwad offers the citizens of Pune the option of green living. The verdant residential townships in localities like Ravet and Moshi have been designed in complete compliance to the PCNTDA guidelines for green spaces within PCMC residential zones. At the same time, the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation offers to them vastly superior civic and social infrastructure and significantly lower property rates.

Anil-Pharande

 

 

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande  Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in the PCMC area of Pune, India.

Pradhikaran: Pune Real Estate’s Hottest Growth Corridor

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Sector 14 in Pradhikaran now boasts of massive integrated township properties like Woodsville

Anil Pharande

The Pune residential real estate boom, initially kick-started by the IT/ITeS industry, has brought about a lot of unregulated development. While property prices in Pune rose unrealistically, the city’s traditional ease of living and pleasant climate, which were previously its USPs, suffered.

Hills and trees have been razed to accommodate the rapidly expanding concrete jungle that all but defines central Pune today. The town planning commission found itself impotent in the face of the development mania, which soon transcended all reasonable, sustainable boundaries.

Real Estate Issues In Pune

In Pune, infrastructure challenges have been increasing because of the ever-increasing population. This has also put escalating pressure on available land, resulting in the forced extension of the city limits.

The pattern of development has been decidedly mercenary and unplanned, with the only criteria being accessibility to existing and upcoming IT hubs. While the rise of Hinjewadi created increasing demand for homes in its immediate vicinity, places like Aundh soon witnessed a slew of projects by property developers. Similarly, property prices in Baner and Wakad rose so steeply that they finally corrected.

Focus On Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC)

As things stand now, central Pune no longer has an iota of its previous quality and ambience in residential property offerings. It is therefore not surprising that homebuyers are beginning to focus on the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation. This area has, in fact, emerged as the last outpost Pune’s previous residential property comfort levels.

The Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation first came into the limelight as an industrial area. However, it also has an advantage that central Pune does not – planned development. The growth of the real estate sector in the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation is closely regulated by the PCNTDA, which works together with the PCMC to ensure planned and realistic growth.

Central Pune continues to suffer from pollution, depleting greenery, traffic jams, water and power scarcity, lack of proper infrastructure and unrealistic residential property rates. Meanwhile, Pradhikaran (the location that defines the PCNTDA) has been benefiting from sensible real estate development.

If one studies the demographic development of Pune real estate growth, it is evident that Pradhikaran is precisely where the city’s growth is headed in the North/North-Western direction. This is extremely significant in terms of long-term residential property investment.

The Rise Of Pradhikaran

In years gone by, the PCNTDA began to acquire land in the PCMC area so that planned development could take place in the future. This planning included the allocation of specific areas for industrial activity, residential property development, public parks, unobstructed spaces, shopping centres, office buildings, roads and utilities.

Water supply to all sectors was ensured by the construction of several mammoth water tanks, each with capacities of several million litres, before development was permitted in each sector. Once this was done, the PCNTDA made the developed land parcels available to property developers.

The PCMC master plan also provides for generous road widths, the likes of which are impossible elsewhere in Pune. This goes a long way in preserving one of Pradhikaran’s natural splendour and hygiene.

Because of these factors, and also because of the growth in the PCMC industrial belt, the last two years have witnessed a huge increase in demand for residential property in the Pradhikaran area.

The fact that a number of large international companies are operating in nearby Chakan has, in fact, been a primary criterion for the area’s development profile. These companies regularly deliver thousands of jobs at all levels, which has had a telling effect on Pradhikaran’s general economic status. Specifically, there has been a huge surge in demand for residential property there.

Pradhikaran’s expansion, which has been inspired by the Chandigarh model of controlled development, began with a few hundred acres. Today, the area speaks for about 7000 acres. Pradhikaran is continually seeing infrastructural enhancements on all fronts – including roads, water and electricity supply and digital connectivity.

Pradhikaran now boasts of massive integrated township projects that offer all the hallmarks of ambient, sustainable living. Apart from the high lifestyle quotient, the investment potential of these townships benefits from a magic mix of real estate market drivers.

The presence of Tata Motors, Talawade, Hinjewadi, Chakan and the Pimpri-Chinchwad industrial belt add to the value of these townships, while the Mumbai-Pune highway and Expressway make it advantageously accessible to the financial capital of Mumbai.

No wonder that Pradhikaran is now being seen as both, the best option for first home buyers, and as the new residential property investment hotspot in Pune’s real estate market.

About The Author

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm operating in the PCMC area of Pune, India.