Failing for the fourth time to find bidders for 20 sites on 123 acres at the Rajiv Gandhi Chandigarh Technology Park (RGCPT), the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) now plans to develop the sites’ periphery.
To attract buyers for these sites under the Habitat Project, CHB plans to build a mall, a five-star hotel and a multiplex on 10 acres along the main road leading to The Lalit hotel and DLF City Centre.
A senior official of CHB, wishing not to be named, said, “Despite trying for four months, we failed to get bidders. So we are planning to come up with these commercial projects on about 10 of the 123 acres. In the past four months, the board has only sold one site to Indian Oil for setting up compressed natural gas (CNG) pump at a cost of Rs 21 crore.”
“We are even in the process of reducing the size of residential plots to one acre each for builders to build flats. Earlier, the size of these plots was 4.55 acres and reduced to 2 acres, before finally being brought down to one acre each. The reserve price of each acre will be Rs 41 crore,” the official further said, adding that while 18 sites will be auctioned to developers, who will provide a gymnasium and swimming pool on each site, CHB will construct around 1,000 flats on two sites.
On each of the one acre residential sites, around 67 flats can be constructed, meaning around 3,350 flats on 50 acres of the total 123 acres.
“These proposals will be tabled and finalised during a board meeting on March 15,” said CHB chairman Maninder Singh Bains.
CHB also plans to come with a hospital on 8.23 acres, the reserve price for which is Rs 308 crore, and a school on 4.5 acres, the reserve price for which is Rs 188 crore. The residential plots of 4.55 acres previously had a reserve price of Rs 181 crore. Both the school and hospital sites are on leasehold, while residential sites are on freehold.
Recently, CHB had written to the UT administration for changing commercial plots from leasehold to freehold and to slash their reserve price, as these were the main reasons for bidders not coming forward.
Area awaiting development for over a decade
The board had got the 123 acres back from Parsvnath Developers in 2015 after a long-drawn legal battle. CHB had decided to develop residential/commercial and other infrastructure at the IT Park with Parsvnath Developers Limited In October 2006. The amount deposited by the allottees was to be shared in the ratio of 70:30 between the developer and CHB.
Thereafter, the board transferred 123 acres as freehold to the builder. But the project could not materialise due to various issues, and applicants started demanding their money back, following which the builder moved court.
In January 2015, the arbitrator appointed by the apex court directed the board to refund Rs 567 crore to the builder, and the land was returned to CHB.