The agency is also involved in executing the ‘Housing for All’ project by 2022.
As the Government of India moves ahead with its ambitious Smart City project, NBCC India Limited has emerged as a major public sector enterprise in the field of infrastructure to execute the project. From developing Smart Cities to redevelopment of existing infrastructure, including residential colonies and government offices, NBCC has taken up development works worth over Rs 5 lakh crore. While Smart Cities remain the focus area, the agency is also involved in executing the “Housing for All” project by 2022 and additionally tasked with completing over 45,000 incomplete residential units of the Amrapali Group following orders of the Supreme Court. Anoop Kumar Mittal, chairman-cum-managing director of NBCC, spoke about developing Smart Cities and redevelopment plans, in an interview to The Sunday Guradian. Excerpts:
Q: What is NBCC’s plan for developing Smart Cities?
A: We are in the process of tie-ups with state governments to develop Smart Cities. However, on its own, NBCC has taken up the development of Smart Cities like the ones at Sarojini Nagar, New Moti Bagh and Kidwai Nagar in Delhi. Several state governments are in talks with NBCC. It’s in a nascent stage and we’re identifying five to seven cities with different business models for project execution.
The Smart City project has two components—IT and infrastructure. In July, we signed an agreement with IBM as our partner for designing IT related works like having a data centre, website, social media presence and others. Under infrastructure, issues like road, sewage system, transportation etc. will be taken care of.
Q: What has been the response of state governments towards the Smart City project?
A: There is a lot of opportunity in the Centre’s smart cities mission. Funds are the most important component of Smart Cities and that’s why cities are going for re-development and monetisation of properties. Here the NBCC has a big role to play. We are already present in a few cities and we are eyeing more tier-II and tier-III cities. We are forming special purpose vehicles (SPVs) for Smart Cities with state governments and local bodies.
Q: Apart from metro cities like Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru, how are smaller cities being taken up by NBCC for redevelopment?
A: There is immense opportunity for development in tier-II cities. Several cities neighbouring the metro cities are witnessing development on similar lines. Major redevelopment works have begun in smaller cities like Alwar, Patna, Ghaziabad, Kochi and Bhubaneswar. Both residential and commercial units are coming up in these cities. A 60-storey World Trade Center is coming up in Guwahati which is a big attraction for the city. Considering the great potential, I am sure of major development activities in these cities in coming years.
Q: What is the model being adopted by NBCC in developing government residential colonies and government offices?
A: We are taking these projects on a priority basis. Already, the governments of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh have approached us for redevelopment of government office complexes. Work has already started in Jaipur. The existing buildings will be demolished and new infrastructure will be created. Our model for redevelopment of cities is based on the principle of generating funds for ourselves to execute the project. The funds generated are pumped in the construction of complexes.
Q: What is the status of redevelopment projects in Delhi?
A: Our first redevelopment project in Delhi was New Moti Bagh, which is also India’s first largest Green Home Complex. We are working on Kidwai Nagar with a project cost of Rs 5,500 crore. The other projects are at Sarojini Nagar (288 acre), Netaji Nagar (112 acre) and Nauroji Nagar (25 acre). While Sarojini Nagar and Netaji Nagar shall have a residential complex as well as commercial space for government and PSU (public sector undertaking) offices, Nauroji Nagar is exclusively for commercial purpose. We’ll create freehold commercial spaces for government, private and individuals. There are seven colonies to be redeveloped, out of which four colonies with a total project cost of Rs 7,000 crore will be redeveloped by CPWD (Central Public Works Department) and three large colonies by NBCC. Some issues are pending before the court, but the projects will be completed following the due procedure.
Q: What about overseas operations of NBCC?
A: NBCC ventured into overseas operations in 1977, executing projects of diverse nature in 15 countries. Presently, we have presence in Maldives, Mauritius, Russia, Turkey and Malaysia implementing various projects and earning consistent revenue.
Q: How does NBCC plan to execute the incomplete Amrapali housing projects?
A: We have been instructed by the Supreme Court to finish the incomplete housing projects of Amrapali Group. The NBCC is well equipped to complete the projects. We are preparing the detailed project report and tenders will be floated soon for these projects.