Realty At Full Throttle: India’s Mega Transport Projects

Realty At Full Throttle: India’s Mega Transport Projects
Feb 2019 , by , in Latest News

Our country is pushing the boundaries of the final frontier by announcing its first manned mission into space by December 2021! However, the real estate in outer space is still light-years away, so let’s explore how the infrastructure projects on this planet will impact the realty sector of India in the times to come.

Text: Nadine D’Souza

Transportation in India has come a long way from the first passenger train in India between Bombay (Bori Bunder) and Thane on 16 April 1853. The centre has been trying to leverage roads, railways and waterways to bring India’s logistics costs down to 8% from current 14%.

The transportation development is an important pillar of the country’s economic progress and it must be accorded due importance. This means it must stretch beyond the election manifesto. The promised benefits can only be reaped if the government ensures that possible delays are avoided and the projects are completed on time.

Realty in the fast lane

The speed of road construction is considered the benchmark for India’s infrastructure creation. Bharatmala Pariyojana, a centrally-sponsored and funded single largest outlay for a government road construction scheme as of December 2017 will build highways from Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana and then Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand including portions of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar alongside Terai, and move to West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, and right up to Manipur and Mizoram. The total length of 34,800 km (21,600 mi) highways under phase-I is estimated to be complete by December 2019. The new as well improved existing highways enhance connectivity and can lead to the emergence of manufacturing hubs, townships and commercial centres in the vicinity.

Setu Bharatam is another important highway project that is supposed to materialize in 2019, which will make all national highways free from railway level crossings. The project involves the building of 208 Railway over Bridge (ROB) / Railway under Bridge (RUB) at level crossing. In addition, Char Dham Expressway a proposed two-lane (in each direction) express National Highway with a minimum width of 10m in the state of Uttarakhand will complement the under development Char Dham Railway by connecting the four holy places in Uttarakhand states includes Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri.

We have already seen how the Yamuna expressway, which triggered construction and industrial activity in the surrounding areas, resulted in gains for the real estate industry. Likewise, the impending highway development project will yield positive results for realty as they boost the connectivity and ease of transportation of man & material.

Fast tracking rail development

Rail network like arteries in a human body connects the cities and states all over India and by facilitating the large-scale movement of freight and passenger traffic, it contributes to economic, physical and social well-being. As Indian cities, struggle with rapid urbanization, transport systems like monorail and metro rail networks are being developed for connectivity within cities thereby directly increasing the opportunities for transit oriented development.  We have already seen major push towards developing rapid rail systems across many states and this New Year may witness many new launches.

In terms of rail corridors, the 650-kilometer long high-speed Mumbai–Ahmedabad high-speed rail corridor from Pune to Ahmedabad through Mumbai may also extend to Bangalore. The proposed rail network is anticipated to raise housing demand and investment potential of the area encouraging real estate activities across the proposed corridor subsequently creating an impact on property prices. Also read

India’s longest rail-road Bogibeel Bridge 4.94 km long was recently opened on December 25, 2018 in Assam. People of Arunachal Pradesh and Assam are going to benefit from it as they can now access basic facilities at all points of time. Come New Year, we are also looking forward to the government’s ‘National Rail Plan’ which will enable the country to integrate its rail network with other modes of transport and develop a multi-modal transportation network.

The wind in the sails of realty developers

Since more than 90% of India’s trade by volume is conducted via the country’s maritime route, there is a continuous need to develop India’s port infrastructure to accelerate growth in the manufacturing industry and to assist the ‘Make in India’ initiative. India has 12 major ports and approximately 200 non-major ports.

The Sagarmala Project promotes port-led development along the 7,500 km long coastline of in the coastal areas. The project aimed at improving the infrastructure across multiple cities along the ring will significantly improve the connectivity between different cities as well as the economic activity. This will naturally lead to a growth in residential housing as well as commercial projects. Government has also planned to develop inland waterways including rivers like Ganga, Brahmaputra and Mahanadi. The Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL) connecting South Mumbai and Navi Mumbai will not only help decongest Mumbai but also encourage people to shift to Navi Mumbai. Slated to open in next three years, it will boost real estate development at both locations.

The sky-high property prospects

Aviation as an infrastructure segment plays a vital role in facilitating the growth of business and economy of a country and luckily, Indian government plans to establish about 70 airports at new locations and almost 30 will be second airports or expansion of existing airfields. These include Shirdi and Sindhudurg in Maharashtra, Bijapur, Gulbarga, Hasan and Shimoga in Karnataka, Karaikal in Puducherry, Dholera in Gujarat and Bhogapuram in Andhra Pradesh.

Sikkim’s Pakyong Airport became operational on September 24 and Kannur International Airport in Kerala opened for commercial operations on December 09 of 2018. The first phase of proposed international airport at Mopa in North Goa will be completed by 2020. And the Navi Mumbai International Airport in Maharashtra is expected to be operational by 2023. The airport at Jewar in Greater Noida likely to be completed by 2024 will offer convenience to the residents in and around Noida. There are plans to connect the airport with the Delhi airport and Greater Noida through the Metro network. Sabarimala Airport by Kerala government is another Greenfield project aimed at providing air connectivity for mostly NRIs to the Sabarimala Ayyappa temple.

Development of new airports inevitably brings with itself prosperity to the city’s real estate as is seen in the case of Indira Gandhi International Airport that transformed the landscape of Gurugram. Presence of an airport makes the city a business destination thus increasing demand for commercial real estate as well as scope for retail and residential.

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