Locked 23 acres of land to be freed up

Locked 23 acres of land to be freed up
06/01/2018 , by , in News/Views

The Kolkata Municipal Corporation is making a third attempt to sell two land parcels near the Silver Spring condominium project and Science City off EM Bypass and replenish its depleted coffers in the wake of the slump in property tax collection over the past few months. The state government has also entrusted the civic authority to auction another plot in Behala that belongs to the industries department. On Thursday, KMC commissioner Khalil Ahmed held a meeting with senior KMC officials and discussed how to go ahead.

The KMC had attempted to sell the plots once in 2011 and again in 2012, but a slump in the global real estate market on the first occasion and tough lease conditions on the second had nixed its plans. Prior to the global economic meltdown in 2008, KMC and KMDA had garnered over Rs 1,150 crore from auctioning plots in the neighbourhood and in Salt Lake.

The plots — 13 acres and 2 acres off Bypass and 8 acres on BL Saha Road — are valued at over Rs 1,000 crore. According to the KMC survey department’s estimate, the 13-acre plot alone should garner around Rs 800 crore.

Realtors though, say the KMC’s price expectation is unreal given the current market situation. “Had the market been buoyant, the land price off EM Bypass would have been Rs 50-60 crore per acre. However, given the present market conditions, the maximum price it can fetch is Rs 35 crore per acre,” said a developer who has a project in the vicinity.

Another developer though pegged the rate even lower at Rs 25 crore per acre. With funds now a scarcity among builders, there aren’t too many developers bidding for the 13-acre plot. Many feel the 2-acre plot will fetch a better price per acre than the larger one. The going rate on BL Saha Road is around Rs 12-15 crore per acre.

Realtors said the two Bypass plots would be used for developing premium housing projects with each apartment priced in excess of Rs 1.5 crore while the one at Behala could be a level lower with apartments priced between Rs 70 lakh and Rs 80 lakh.

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