KOLKATA: This is one incentive that may go a long way in getting rid of the city’s crumbling buildings -the Kolkata Municipal Corporation will from now offer an additional 100% FAR (floor area ratio) to owners if they agree to raze their “insecure” houses. This means, if the owner of an unsafe building wants to pull down his three-storey dilapidated house for reconstruction, he will be allowed to erect a sixstorey structure.

Under existing building rules, KMC is empowered to give such a relaxation to the landlord under “special purpose”.

The civic body came up with the sop following the recent incidents of building collapse in the city . The death of two women under rubble of a decrepit building on Pathuriaghata Street last month had prompted chief minister Mamata Banerjee to ask mayor Sovan Chatterjee to formulate a policy to give maximum relief to residents of unsafe buildings. “We had no other alter native but to offer additional FAR, as a mere slapping of insecure tag on dilapidated buildings has failed to solve the problem. Tenants have refused to move out of unsafe buildings despite the risk,” said a KMC building department official. Under the new scheme, the landlord and his te nants will have to come to an agreement, following which the KMC building department will accept the building plan and approve it without delay . “In most cases, tenants are the victims of building collapse because they refuse to move out even if the owner or landlord proposes to demolish the old structure and build a new one. The tenants fear once they move out they will not be accommodated in the new building,” a KMC official said.

Apart from granting the additional 100% FAR, the KMC building department will also readily sanction plans from tenants requesting repair work on the dilapidated portions of an unsafe building. “We have decided to attach prime importance while it comes to repairing dilapidated portions of an insecure building. Previously we had to wait for a nod from the owner to sanction the repair plan. We will set up a cell for fast-track approval of both reconstruction and repair plans for highly hazardous buildings,” the official said.

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Source: TOI-Kol