Srinagar Development Authority was created with main objectives to bring a positive change of Srinagar city as per the prospective /spatial plans. The first and foremost responsibility of Srinagar Dev. Authority is to prepare and implement “master Plan” for the city of Srinagar. SDA has prepared Master Plans first in the year 1971 and IInd in the year 2000. IInd Master Plan was for a period of 20 years .It has however been reviewed mid way and new Master Plan 2915-2035 stands approved recently.
Master plan has divided city in various zones for the purpose of development. It is proper to mention here that Master Plan as proposed and being implemented, cannot prove effective unless important Agencies like UEED, R&B, SMC,PHE, SDA,LAWDA,PDD do not work in total coordination and integration. The main stumbling block in effective and speedy development is unauthorized constructions, encroachment on public utility properties like State Land, Roads, Lanes & By-Lanes etc. As such unless and until the aforementioned organizations particularly, SMC, SDA,LAWDA do not cooperate with each other, the comprehensive development shall remain a dream. The Organization with the responsibility of arresting the unauthorized constructions and encroachments need to be given more legal teeth, so that unscrupulous elements of society are crushed with heavy hand.
The SDA has made BOCA functional for its area of jurisdiction to regulate growth and development of local area. The SDA will examine and act to rectify the violations of Master Plan up to till now.
To be more effective and professional in its working SDA intends to prepare Zonal Developmental Plans with the help of Geographic Information System (GIS) software and satellite imagery. The Software of (GIS) improves scientifically the ability to add features on the map and also information of the zonal development areas. The SDA has already procured the software of GIS through ERA.
The SDA has focused its attention on Urban transportation. The traffic pressure on roads has made transport services irritating for the general public. Not only the passengers are facing heat of un-comfortable passenger service but slow movement of goods in the city is also hampering the economic growth. To improve passenger service as well as goods movement, the SDA has already taken up the implementation of Master Plan in traffic and tansport sector. Following projects have been implemented.
1.Regional Bus terminal for south bound traffic at panthachowk has been completed at the cost of Rs. 494.00 lacs by way of macadamization and drainage under mission AMRUT. The Bus Terminal at Panthachowk stands commissioned. Process of augmenting by way of providing additional facilities continues.
2.The SDA has developed the Sumo/Taxi Stand at various places like; Panthachowk, Mini Bus Stand Bemina, Soura,Harwan and Parimpora.
3.To ease the pressure of goods laden trucks on the roads of Lalchowk, Magarmalbagh and surrounding areas, the Srinagar Development Authority developed a “Transport Nagar” at Parimpora adjacent to Fruitmandi. All the goods and Forwarding Agencies in the Srinagar City have been shifted to the said place, thus removing much of the inconvenience to the General Public due to the heavy truck traffic in these areas.
4.With the tremendous increase in the traffic and also due to rise in the population of small cars, the parking in the city centres has now become a greater challenge to different agencies particularly traffic police. To provide parking facilities in the city particularly in the business and economic hubs of Budshahchowk, Lalchowk and its surrounding areas, the SDA has developed parking places at Sherwani Road in between SBI and Ahdoos Hotel, Poloview, Residency Road, Nehru Park etc.
5.The SDA has already earmarked projects to create more parking facilities. The parking facilities shall be integrated schemes of parking/commercial activity. The Commercial activity along with parking facility has been envisaged to make projects economically viable and self sustainable.
6.A macanized multilevel parking for 286 cars has been developed at old KMD which is operational. In addition to this two number ramp type multilevel parkings one at old SMG having a capacity of 467 cars and 130 two wheelers and other at Sheikhbagh having a capacity of 430 cars and 50 two-wheelers being developed under AMRUT mission. The work on both the projects is in progress.
With the day to day increase in the population and migration of rural population to Urban Areas particularly in Srinagar City has put lot of pressure on the City. To de-congest the populated areas of Srinagar City and also to ease the pressure of inflow of rural migration, the SDA has formulated Housing Colony. The SDA has already developed Housing Colonies for ‘High Income Group’ (HIG), Middle Income Group(MIG), LIG,EWS at Bemina, Srinagar. The Colonies are under the process of up gradation. Similarly SDA has constructed Gulposh Apartments consisting of 32 flats at Bemina in phase-Ist and 60 flats in Phase-2nd. The allotment process stands completed. Keeping in tune with the fast-changing urban landscape of Srinagar and mounting stress on its scarce land resources, SDA has embarked upon the ambitious initiative of exploring trans-formative and sustainable solution for affordable housing in the city by pioneering the concept of vertical colonies with integrated community facilities.
What SDA strives to explore in this new initiative is to make people realize the dream of owning a secure, compact and affordable home in Srinagar and facilitate them to relocate with fast-changing housing needs without occupying as much land resources as the traditional houses do.
Given the mounting demand for flat-type housing in Srinagar and to carry forward the pioneering concept of constructing integrated vertical housing colonies, SDA has earmarked around 89 kanals of land in the existing Mini Housing Colony, opposite Hajj House Bemina, for construction of another 532 residential flats under the banner of Shehjar Apartments for which the work for five blocks (2 2BHK and 3 3BHK) is in progress. Each tower consists of 28 flats, with stilt parking, 2 lifts and 2 stair cases. The flats will have gated entry from Bemina by-pass .
The SDA has also developed Housing Colonies at Noorbagh and Sumerbugh for rehabilitation of dislocated families of River Jehlum. Dream Project of “Model Township” complete in all respects at Rakh Gund Aksha shall be SDA’s star project.4200 kanals of land stands already transferred to SDA by the Government. After removing the initial hitches/difficulties, the dream project shall be developed in public private partnership. The SDA has already filled a patch of land which has been acquired out of 4200 kanals.
Developmental of Institutional Areas:-
Certain offices within main city were also contributing to congestion and traffic jamming. The SDA in order to ease pressure on the city roads proposed and developed office complexes outside congested areas. To start with, SDA constructed its own office building outside city at Bemina and nearby to its offices, beautiful buildings/Secrecy Block building for Board of School Education at Bemina were constructed by SDA office building for Directorate of Economics and Statistics and Ecology and Environment had already been constructed by SDA at Bemina,Srinagar.
The Habitat Complex at Bemina has been constructed and commissioned to accommodate the offices of Town Planning Organization(TPO), Architect Organization(AO), Urban Development Agency, Kashmir (UDAK), Housing Board and Urban Local Bodies.
The SDA is self funded organization. It has to generate its own revenues. The already constructed commercial assets such as shops and halls are giving some revenue in the shape of rent etc. To augment its revenue the SDA ha constructed commercial complex at M.A Road, named as “Sangarmaal”.
The Ist phase of the prestigious commercial complex has been completed. The shops have been put to auction and presently the Mall is functional. The complex will not only generate revenue for SDA but will be synthesis of cultural and economic integration. Craft Bazar being part of the complex symbolizes the historical tradition of Kashmiri Art and Craft.
The “Sangarmaal” is also unique and first experience of modern marketing in the valley.
The SDA has already constructed commercial complexes at various places and alotted the shops/commercial spaces to general public through auction. Commercial complexes viz; Iqbal Shopping Complexes at old Charisharief Adda, Jehlum Plaza/ Doodganga Shopping Complex, double storeyed shopline at Batamaloo, Yemberzal Mall at Court Road, Srinagar are few of the commercial assets of SDA that are functional at present. Morever, recently a three storeyed shopline stands completed at Bemina opposite SKIMS Hospital Bemina, Srinagar. The shops/spaces have been auctioned/alloted to the general public.
The SDA feels that apart from commercial and developmental activity, it has social commitment as well. Many of the families of Srinagar city are not in a position to accommodate their ceremonies due to the dearth of space, Lower & Middle Income Groups suffer more on this count. To mitigate this problem, the SDA proposed to construct Community Halls. Two Community Halls have been constructed at Rajuri Kadal and Bemina and the same are being used by the public. Morever, one more community hall has been constructed at Gonikhan Srinagar.The hall has been completed and commissioned. The SDA will identify more slots particularly in down town city to construct more community halls which shall be equipped with all facilities to perform the ceremonies like marriages.These shall have provision for Guest Rooms, Waza Shed small scientific slaughter room and parking facility. Provision for water supply/sanitation and electrification are in built in the projects itself in next phase.Apart from that SDA has constructed a Guest House near its office Complex at Bemina.
As already said, the SDA is and has been engaged in the development of Srinagar City and also to promote and secure a development of local areas according to Master Plan. Land management in Srinagar is daunting task. The implementation and conceptualization of a metropolitan city with modern outlook cannot be achieved unless we involve the experts on city development, Architect, Business and Market Experts, Hospital Administrators surveyors and Geographers. A comprehensive plan in this regard needs to be formulated. With the expertise and vision the “Srinagar City” can become one of the best cities and for this Government shall take all necessary steps. The “Government” is committed to turn Srinagar and Jammu cities as modern metropolitan cities, which will not only improve the living conditions of the populace but shall provide conducive environment for knowledge , intellectualism and literature.