Henceforth, people who want to alter the interior layout of their flats will not have to seek prior permission from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), provided the changes do not affect the structural members, such as the pillars and load-bearing walls.”If the changes being made inside a flat do not affect the structural members, such as pillars or load-bearing walls… (the consent of the BMC will not have to be sought),” said municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta, while speaking on the sidelines of a session on ‘Doing business in Maharashtra’, organised by the state government’s Department of Industries and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), on Wednesday.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Any repairs that do not affect the footprint of the buildings and do not require BMC permissions will have to be informed through a self-declaration. Permissions, however, will have to be sought for any alterations affecting the structure.Mehta added this would be reflected in the new Development Control Regulations (DCR) to be issued soon. He explained that for instance, if a flat owner wanted to expand his bedroom while reducing the size of the hall, no consents will have to be sought from the civic body, if this confirmed to the norms.Earlier in the session, Mehta said all new roads to be built by the BMC in Mumbai will have separate utility ducts while for old roads, cross ducts will be laid at specific distances, such as 500 meters. He noted that now, the road length accounted for just 9% of Mumbai’s area, but they planned to increase it to 18%.Mehta further said 95% of Mumbai was Brownfield development and 40% of the city consisted of slums, with cessed buildings making up for 22%. It was short of one million housing units. To prevent the same roads from being dug up time and again, the BMC will ask utilities and agencies to apply for digging permissions by a specific cut-off date for concessional rates. The civic body will allocate slots to prevent the same road from being dug up repeatedly. In case digging has to be undertaken by any company later, higher premium will be levied.Mehta said every noting on files and even reasons for rejection of building proposals will be put into the public domain. Digital signatures have been distributed to officers, he added. Any documentary or telephonic reference by unconnected parties regarding grant of building permissions has been put into the public domain. This will ensure that if false complaints or vested interests were delaying a project, it will be put into the public sphere.
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