Track2Realty Exclusive: If you want to know how the growth of the real estate can make a city bi-functional, visit Gobichettipalayam (also known asÂ Gobi). It is a town and municipality in Tamil Nadu which happens to be the second largest city and urban agglomeration in Erode districtÂ and is the administrative headquarters of Gobichettipalayam taluka, revenue and educational districts. It is located at the center of the South Indian peninsula, about 400 kilometres (249Â miles) southwest of the state capital Chennai and about 80 kilometres (50Â miles) east of Coimbatore.
Not very long ago the place was primarily known for agriculture and textile industries that contribute majorly to the economy of the city. Gobichettipalayam is one of the leading producers of silk cocoon, turmeric, coconut and plantain in the state. However, the increasing urbanisation and the resultant real estate activity has made the city fast develop and has been described by the government as “bi-functional”, with 31 per cent of the work force engaged in agriculture, 56 per cent in trading and other activities and 13 per cent in industry. A number of banks have been established in the town in recent years, testimony to the growth and prosperity of the local economy.
The economy of Gobichettipalayam centers on agriculture, with paddy, sugarcane, plantain, tobacco and turmeric being the principal crops. The taluk is known for its lush green paddy fields which attracts south Indian film industry. Gobichettipalayam is well known for its plantain cultivation and the production of coconuts. There are regulated market places run by the Government of India for the trade of agricultural products mainlyÂ turmeric,Â copra and bananas.
A large number of spinning mills have come up in the city to support to the weaving and Knitwear to supplement Tirupur market. IT, ITeS and BPO sector is also developing with a few start up companies based out of the city. Other industries include cotton textiles, motors, pumps, automobile spares, textile machinery manufacturing, castings and machined parts.
Though the population is still dominated by the Kongu Vellalar community, the urbanisation in this part of the world is fast changing the demography. Due to increased economic activity there are a significant numbers of people from other cultures like North Indians, Gorkhas, Malayalis, and people from north eastern part of India. As a result, Kongu Tamil, the dialect spoken by the natives is also giving way to English and Tamil. Other languages spoken include Malayalam, Kannada and Telugu.
With the rise and growth of the city as a real estate market what is all the more striking here is the fact that the social infrastructure is also keeping pace with the physical infrastructure. Erode district has several facilities for higher education including a Medical College at Perundurai and many engineering, arts and science colleges. The district is divided into two educational districts, Gobichettipalayam andÂ Erode. Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center of Research and Laboratory for Rapid urbanization and Architecture is located atÂ Erode.
The property rates in the city have naturally been affected. As a matter of fact, the property rates are way ahead as per the Coimbatore or Chennai standards. Though row houses are still the norm, but apartment culture has stepped into the city with a 2BHK flat recently been sold at Rs. 75 lakhs which became a talking point in the city. But that is a reflection of the scheme of things to come ahead.