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Salt Lake eyes basement carparks

Residents of Salt Lake living in cooperative buildings and having cars will not need to park their vehicles outside any more, if a proposal by the town planners is implemented.

“Parking is an acute problem there and we plan to allow basement parking in cooperative buildings that come up on at least five cottahs,” a municipality official told Metro on Sunday.

“The proposal is still in a nascent stage. We can talk about it only when it has taken final shape and is placed before the urban development department,” said the official. Municipality chairman Dilip Gupta refused to comment on the issue.

With the building rules of the township not allowing basement car-parking in cooperative buildings, residents are being forced to park their cars outside. “Some councillors raised the issue in the last board meeting, held recently, and the proposal came up to allow basement parking in plots over five cottahs,” sources said.

However, the sources said, permission for basement parking may be given only to those buildings coming up in future. “Buildings whose plans have been sanctioned may not be allowed to do so,” the sources said.

According to officials, the civic authorities are keeping in mind the growing population in the township. “The present population of Salt Lake is nearly two lakh and it may go up to nearly seven lakh in future. The masterplan of the township was prepared keeping in mind a population of a little more than four lakh,” the official said.

Officials fear the increasing pressure of population and vehicles will affect the infrastructure of the ‘planned’ township. “The move for basement parking will take the pressure off the roads to some extent,” sources said.

The police also want a tough rule against indiscriminate parking of vehicles to bring down the number of road accidents in Salt Lake. At recent meetings, the police has asked the municipality to take measures.

Apart from allowing basement parking, which is in a primary stage of planning, the municipality has also decided to set up new parking lots in different parts of the township. “This will curb traffic hazards, and the municipality will also earn revenue from parking fees,” an official said. Chairman Gupta said the municipality’s estimated earning from parking fees is Rs 25 lakh. “Fees for buses, minibuses and chartered buses will also be introduced,” Gupta said. The proposal has been approved by the board.

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