Bengaluru: Who is responsible for planning Bengaluru's development? Nobody, it seems.
With the term of the current master plan getting over this year, ideally a new master plan — comprehensive development plan (CDP) - 2031 — should have been in place by now. However, the Bengaluru Metropolitan Planning Committee (BMPC) formed in September last year to devise the plan, has not met even once.
In fact, expressing dissatisfaction over the non-functioning of the chief minister-headed committee, as many as 12 of the 20 members have recently quit. On the other hand, the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), which was hitherto responsible for master plans, is dragging its feet on the next master plan.
Master plans are expected to envisage and determine what the city will look like through the targeted period.
One of the key functions of BMPC is to plan for the Bengaluru Metropolitan Area. According to the Karnataka Municipal Corporation Act, the committee should formulate a metropolitan area draft development plan within a year from the date of its constitution.
Urban expert Suresh K said the master plan is crucial as it serves as the foundation for developing strategic plans and finally designing neighbourhoods. "A solid plan in this regard is crucial for Bengaluru as the city has its share of concerns that need immediate attention. Some of the factors include provision of housing, civic amenities and alternate modes of transportation, protection of natural areas and supply of adequate infrastructure facilities etc," he said.
Asked what would be the fate of the city with the term of present master plan getting over this year, BDA Town Planning Officer Chowdegowda Chowdegowda said every master plan as "factor of safety" wherein extra land space is kept for unforeseen circumstances. "We will do our job and submit the plan before the BMPC and wait for the further proceedings," he said.
BOX: Planning the city
1952: Bangalore Development Committee founded
1961: Karnataka Town and Country Planning (KTCP) Act enacted
1963: First outline development plan (ODP) for Bengaluru submitted to the state government; it was approved in 1972 and adopted under the KTCP Act 1961
1976: Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) constituted
1984: 1st comprehensive development plan (CDP) or master plan for Bengaluru prepared; approved in 1985.
1995: 2nd CDP for 2005 approved
2005: 3rd CDP for 2015 prepared and approved after few years.
Bangalore Metropolitan Area (BMA) - 1,306 sqkm area (covering 387 villages, seven City Municipal Councils (CMC) and one Town Municipal Council (TMC))
Area for development (conurbation area) restricted to 786 sqkm
Green belt and agricultural areas should be spread across 455 sqkm
The master plan 2015 segregated the city development across five concentric belts: the core area comprising the Central Business District; peri-central area with older planned residential areas surrounding the core area; extensions on both sides of the Outer Ring Road; new layouts and green belt and agricultural area on the city's outskirts including small villages.
Plan the city so that to accommodate around 8.8 million people (3.25% current annual growth rate) by allowing urban development to the extent of the proposed Peripheral Road.