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43-54 billion REIT eligible commercial property in India

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News Point: With 315 MSF office and 39 MSF mall stocks, value of REIT-eligible stock seen to be highest in Bengaluru, followed by Mumbai. Bengaluru, Mumbai and Delhi-NCR cumulatively account for over 67% of total REIT-eligible stock

Office space in India, Office space absorption, Commercial real estate in India, Commercial property trends, Indian real estate market, Indian property market, India office market report, Real estate news magazine, Real estate news portal, Real estate website, Track2Media Research Pvt Ltd, Track2Realty, NRI investment in IndiaIndian commercial real estate offers investment opportunity worth USD 43 – 54 billion (Rs. 2,88,758 crore-Rs. 3,60,948 crore) across the top 8 cities via REIT-eligible ready stocks as per and report entitled “Commercial Real Estate: Steering Growth in Indian Cities”.

The report was released at RICS Real Estate Conference 2016 – “Commercial Real Estate: Corporate Catalyst” with Cushman & Wakefield as research partners for the conference. A key focus of the conference discussions was evolving occupier demand, REITs and international standards.

The report estimates that the value of REIT-eligible stock is seen to be the highest in Bengaluru (USD 15.8 billion)/Rs. 1,05,213 crore) primarily due to the high volume of investible Grade developments. Mumbai (USD 14.5 billion/Rs. 96,461 crore) comes a close second due to higher capital values of commercial properties, despite having roughly half of Bengaluru’s REIT-able stock.

The estimated value of REIT –eligible stock in NCR is USD 11.04 billion / Rs. 73,423 crores which is the third highest. Further, it is estimated that approximately 315 million square feet (msf) of office inventory is eligible for REIT across the cities. The REIT-eligible inventory includes existing non-strata sold Grade A inventory, wherein Bengaluru, Mumbai and Delhi-NCR cumulatively account for over 67%. 

Delivering the keynote address, Barnali Mukherjee, Chief General Manager, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), said, “We have come out with the IPO guidelines for the issuance of units of INVits. On same lines, we are working on the IPO guidelines for units of REITs. Since there are no accounting standards for REITs and INVits, we have set up sub-committees looking at the financials to be brought out with the offer documents as also the continuous disclosure to be made; also set up a sub-committee for issuance of valuations, who will come out with their report. On the valuations side, a separate chapter has been included in REIT regulations where lots of rights and responsibilities have been given to the valuer who has to comply with International Valuation Standards.”

“We have already received 4 applications for infrastructure investment trusts (INVits), where two applications have been processed and two are registered. We have come out with amendments on REIT regulations to bring more clarity and make it more acceptable but as of now, we haven’t received any applications for REITs. Whatever SEBI could do has already been done, in terms of removing key roadblocks such as capital gains tax and DDT and now we are looking forward to applications for REITs so that the REIT market can take off,” she added.

Sachin Sandhir, Global Managing Director – Emerging Business, RICS said “Commercial real estate is expected to see continued demand, fueled by positive business sentiment (especially in IT/ITES and new age digital businesses) based on major policy reforms undertaken by the Government. There is also likely to be considerable international investor interest in income yielding assets and the first REITs and INVits are not far away. REITs will drive the need for Indian commercial real estate to speak the language of international investors which, in turn will create demand international standards and corporate governance; professionalism and skills – which are all the things that the RICS Stands for.”

Sanjay Dutt, Managing Director, India, Cushman & Wakefield said, “REITs can provide a huge opportunity for developers and investors in India given the potential in the . REITs would help developers resolve their fund-raising issues and allow them to focus on completing their projects in a timely manner. Apart from the top 3 cities, Chennai and Pune have immense scope for REITs with approximately 34 MSF each of REITS-eligible stock. Going forward, by the end of 2017, Hyderabad’s REIT-able stock is expected to reach approximately 41 MSF. This would place Hyderabad’s REIT-able stock at 4th place, surpassing that of Chennai and Pune. With investor and occupier interests rising in Hyderabad, a high number of Grade A projects are likely to be completed enabling high REIT-able stock.”

Apart from the office sector, the retail sector too has high potential to generate rental income for investors. Since last year, private-equity firms have shown interest in investing in malls in India, indicating that there is acertain attractiveness in the retail shopping centre space owing to future prospects.

Sachin Sandhir further added, “RICS will continue to work to promote International Property Measurement Standards (IPMS) a global collaborative initiative with 70 global professional bodies, which will bring in a common basis of measuring assets. RICS is also advocating International valuation standards (IVS) and the RICS red book as a basis for valuations of these REIT-able assets. With a common basis of measurement and a common basis of valuations and skilled professionals to undertake delivery of grade A office space coupled with ease of doing business initiatives of the Government, Indian commercial real estate will surely realize its true potential.”

Devina Ghildial, Managing Director – South Asia, RICS said – “2016 looks to be a bright spark for commercial real estate. The asset class looks to be on solid footing with all the policy reforms and initiatives from the Government. The industry will see the emergence of not only REIT’s and INVits but new asset classes including new suburban business districts which will propel commercial real estate to produce a lot more grade A office space in the times to come. In fact, in Q1 2016 alone, the market has seen absorption to the tune of approximately 5 MSF.

“Going forward, we will also see corporate occupiers and investors starting to demand international standards and focus on creating sustainable assets, which will create long term value for international investors in the form of higher yields. This would be a key expectation from the development community. Now more than ever, the potential of commercial real estate is apparent, and this makes it an opportune time for REITs to find their way into the market,” she added.

Of the REIT-eligible stock across the 8 cities, Bengaluru has over 100 MSF of REIT-eligible stock (33% of total REIT-able stock), more than double of that of Mumbai. Approximately 75% of the total (all grades) office stock in Bengaluru is eligible for REIT investments. Delhi-NCR (56 MSF) and Mumbai (51 MSF) are expected to follow Bengaluru in terms of REIT-able stock as of Q1 2016.

REITs once implemented in India would enable investors to generate a stable source of income and also earn profits by trading the units of REITs, thereby increasing the attractiveness of REITs as investing medium. With the government exempting Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT) for Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) of REITS in the Union Budget, the investment vehicle is likely to be more attractive for investors.

Mall stock of 39 MSF eligible for REIT investment in India

The top 8 cities have REIT-eligible mall supply of approximately 39 MSF, with Bengaluru, Delhi-NCR and Mumbai together accounting for about 64% of the retail inventory. Owing to the presence of large mall developers in Delhi-NCR, Mumbai and Bengaluru that operate some of the best malls in India, investors are likely to concentrate their investments in these cities. Mumbai (11 MSF) has the highest stock of REIT-able malls i.e. non-strata sold grade A malls followed by Delhi NCR (7.4 MSF) and Bengaluru (6.5 MSF).

The changing phase of workplace utilization in India

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Office space in India, Office space absorption, Commercial real estate in India, Commercial property trends, Indian real estate market, Indian property market, India office market report, Real estate news magazine, Real estate news portal, Real estate website, Track2Media Research Pvt Ltd, Track2Realty, NRI investment in IndiaThe IT/ITeS sector has clearly been driving corporate real estate in the country; and consequently, much of the development in this space is being propelled by IT and back-office demand for workspaces, as per CBRE’s India report – Real Estate & Workplace Strategies of Shared Services Occupiers.

The report focuses on the remarkable growth of the outsourcing and technology industry over the last two decades; and how the sector has been implementing strategies for managing their real estate portfolios.

India’s status as a global outsourcing hub is also reflected by the fact that approximately 90% of total office space occupied in 2014 and during the first nine months of 2015 was for either back-offices or a combination of back and front-office operations of companies.

As shared services occupiers respond to the forces of globalization amid a backdrop of economic uncertainty and focus on cost optimization, their real estate portfolio strategies have varied.

Anshuman Magazine, Chairman & MD, CBRE South Asia said, “For most global corporate office occupiers setting up a shared services platform in the country, space take up strategies are tied with their overall corporate strategies. As such, parameters like space utilization, efficiency and productivity play a large role in revising real estate strategies. Going forward I believe that these larger aspects will dictate how global corporates expand their offices across key cities in the country.”

“While India remains the preferred destination for outsourcing, corporate occupiers have been growing in suburban and peripheral locations in the major Tier I cities. The emphasis on quality infrastructure, mass transit and rentals continues to play a key role in decision making,” said Ram Chandnani, Managing Director, Transaction Services, CBRE South Asia Pvt. Ltd.

Organizations are now under enormous pressure to drive down costs by increasing their workplace ‘static density’—the space per sq. ft. per workstation. Benchmarking metrics such as workplace density and space utilization are becoming more critical in helping corporate occupiers make informed workplace and real estate decisions, and manage their real estate as a strategic asset; however, this needs to be approached in the right way.

Focus on workspace density

Workspace density can be broadly classified into ‘static’ or ‘dynamic’ types. In a static density model, employees are assigned a fixed workspace as a primary work station. The dynamic density model allows staff to work flexibly by choosing different places to work around the office.

Static density across companies is based on factors such as the location of the office (e.g., whether an office is in a core or suburban area), size of operations, the use of space as reward (e.g., senior staff are often allocated larger spaces), whether it is a private or public sector company, and the nature of work (e.g., employees in the financial sector often have specialized spaces and work desks).

Space and Technology: Workspaces are getting smaller, and documentation is increasingly moving online, limiting storage needs. While the increased focus on effective space utilization has given birth to the concept of workplace strategy, technology is playing a pivotal role in successful implementation.

Space Utilization: Workplace strategy involves creating a healthy relationship between technology, space and people. However, space utilization has the most significant impact on commercial real estate dynamics. Firms have to accommodate growing headcounts amid a steady increase in real estate costs, which is a challenge in the cost-sensitive and high-headcount outsourcing industry.

Emerging workplace trends in India

Office space design has gradually moved from a rigid floor plan to one facilitating an open plan seating arrangement. Over the past decade or so, the share of cubicle spaces in the overall floor plan of a typical office has fallen from 23–25% to just 5% today. On the other hand, open plan seating, which comprised around 25% of the floor plan in the past, has increased to 45–50% today.

The share of open floor seating arrangements often varies across different floor plate sizes. For larger office spaces, companies have the flexibility to further increase the size of the area allocated to open plan seating while doing away with corner offices and limiting the space allocated for meeting rooms and circulation

“Corporate occupiers must develop a complete understanding of how their people work, and what their organizational objectives and imperatives are. It is only by aligning these two fundamental perspectives that companies can implement a workplace strategy capable of achieving cost effective business transformation,” Magazine added.

Land pooling policy promises to change Delhi-NCR property

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Delhi Land Pooling Policy, New Residential Property in Delhi, Future of Delhi Housing, Delhi real estate market, Housing supply in Delhi, Delhi housing inventory, Indian real estate market, Indian property market, Real estate news portal, real estate online, real estate website, Track2Realty, Track2Media ResearchWhy do you buy a house in Noida, Noida Extension, Ghaziabad, Faridabad or even non-descript & hard-to-commute locations of NCR when you work in Delhi? If affordability is not the issue, won’t you prefer to live in the capital Delhi and not the satellite cities of NCR?

The answer to this and many other compromised housing solution of most of the residents of Delhi-NCR lies in the land pooling policy of the Delhi Development Authority (DDA). The land pooling policy, which had been notified earlier in September 2013, has finally been approved by the city’s Lieutenant Governor (LG) recently. This policy will enable urban development in a speedy way where the role of the DDA will be that of a facilitator.

The land pooling policy will facilitate private developers to directly acquire land from farmers/landowners willing to participate in the land pooling scheme, where they will get back about 40–60 per cent of the developed land. DDA, in turn, is to develop the necessary support infrastructure and mass/EWS housing projects on the land, while developers are to receive a large portion of the same for further real estate development. With this policy there will be creation of additional 14 lakh residential units under the PPP model.

DDA in its meeting held on 7th of November this year has approved the regulations for operationalisation of this land pooling policy wherein public private partnership in land assembly and its development has been envisaged. DDA has acquired and developed 75,610 hectares of land till date. As per the Master Plan of Delhi-2021, Delhi still has 27,629 hectares (approx 70,000 acres of land.

The Master Plan of Delhi 2021 envisages development of about 24,000 hectares of land for accommodating additional 48 lakh population in the national capital by the year 2021. The total area of Delhi is 1483 sq mt, out of which built up area is 47.31 per cent, urban extension 14.83 per cent, natural features such as river, water bodies, ridge, forest and sanctuary 13.16 per cent and green belt is 24.25 per cent. Approx 220 sq km at 250 PPH (Person Per Hectare – city level density) would come under urban extension 2021 and average space would be 40 sq m for 230 lakh population in 2021.

Under the Master Plan – 2021, never in the history of urbanisation has any state released the entire land mass for 100 per cent urbanisation. Under the proposed plan, Delhi is unlocking 27,500 hectares of zoned land for residential development (Master Plan and Zonal Plan already notified) and there will be no agriculture land in Delhi by 2021; neither there will be any air polluting industry. Further, land will be available at cheaper cost within the NCR region and the last peripheral village of Delhi has been notified as the Green, which allows development of farm houses.

The likely localities to be applicable for such real estate and infrastructure development will be peripheral colonies and villages such as Mehrauli, Chhatarpur, Khanpur, Narela, and Najafgarh, among others. This policy is expected to prove to be positive for the National Capital Region in the long-term, since land prices in the suburban markets of Gurgaon and Noida would eventually rationalize with fresh housing supply coming into the Delhi market.

Calling it a game changer move, Anshuman Magazine, CMD of CBRE South Asia maintains that the Master Plan Delhi 2021 (MPD 2021) is arguably the largest real estate opportunity in terms of state assurance and demographic demand for urban growth and development in India; and the recently sanctioned land pooling policy is perhaps the first of many such state initiatives.

“Land pooling schemes, such as this, are expected to help solve issues related to the availability of land for necessary real estate development and infrastructure formation for our ever-increasing urban population—especially for the creation of urban green spaces, open public spaces and mass housing for EWS and low-income groups,” says Magazine.

Rahul Gaur, CMD of Brys Group maintains that this policy assures fun­da­mental changes in the way of acquis­i­tion and devel­op­ment of land in Delhi. He points out the DDA earlier used to acquire land from landowners, provide the infrastructure, and then auction it to developers. The price at these auctions ranged from 10-30 times the acquisition price. While the DDA made a killing, the landowners did not share the benefits. This led to criticism that the DDA was profiteering at their expense.

“Land pooling is aimed at countering the criticism of DDA profiteering out of an urban need. Now, the DDA, landowners, and developers will join hands. The landowners in an area will transfer their legal rights to a designated land pooling agency. In return, they will receive certificates that will entitle them to developed land in the future, its amount depending on a specified formula. The DDA will provide the infrastructure, and private developers will develop the projects. Once the development work is done, the land that the owners receive will command a higher price than their original holdings,” says Gaur.

Nikhil Hawelia, Managing Director of Hawelia Group finds the game changer move of DDA in sync with the emerging market realities. According to him, the first Master Plan of Delhi was for­mu­lated in the year 1961. The policy then of DDA was to acquire large chunks of land dir­ectly from the land own­ers at a price determ­ined by the DDA. DDA would then under­take the mas­ter plan­ning and then sell/develop the land, piece by piece.

“From the 1980’s, as the government body failed to keep pace with the urbanisation and housing needs the private developers, through their incre­mental abil­ity, right­fully star­ted seek­ing a lar­ger role. In the past couple dec­ades, the demand surge from the con­sumers actu­ally made the sup­ply from the gov­ern­ment agencies inad­equate. And hence, the major­ity of sup­ply was cre­ated by the private real estate players. Today, land pooling is also finding favour because land acquisition has become very difficult. Currently, a private entity acquiring land must obtain the consent of 80 per cent of the land-owning families in the area (70 per cent in the case of public-private partnership projects). Obtaining consensus is also difficult,” says Hawelia.

In a nutshell, land pooling will increase the supply of land, resulting in price moderation. Besides Delhi, there could be a ripple effect in the suburbs. With fresh supply coming into the Delhi market, land prices in suburbs like Gurgaon and Noida will also moderate eventually. As a result, the cost of built-up real estate in general and housing in particular will come down since land is the biggest cost component. However, analysts have a word of caution and they suggest prospective home buyers should temper their expectations. The prices will correct sharply only if supply increases drastically. If new supply enters the market slowly, as is likely, the prices may not fall much.

Office space strong catalyst to housing revival in Mumbai

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Office space in India, Office space absorption, Commercial real estate in India, Commercial property trends, Indian real estate market, Indian property market, India office market report, Real estate news magazine, Real estate news portal, Real estate website, Track2Media Research Pvt Ltd, Track2Realty, NRI investment in India In the evaluation of sustainability of a housing market, the absorption of office space is the prime indicator across the world. After all, it is the economic activity and the job magnet that fuels the demand for new houses. The city of Mumbai has always been blessed on that count due to demand and supply dynamics.

As a matter of fact, in Mumbai the stock of housing supply has been so less compared to the inherent demand that the city happens to be arguably the only city in the world where the best of residential properties are selling at higher price than the best of commercial spaces.

The slowdown and the resultant slow sales, of late, nevertheless started giving an impression of over-supply in the under-supplied housing market of Mumbai. However, the financial capital of India has time and again proved the prophets of doomsday wrong with its property market proving to be more resilient than any other market.

And hence, market analysts are not surprised with the fact that the dynamics is yet again changing and the office space absorption pattern has already indicated that the revival of Mumbai housing market is on the cards.

Facts speak for themselves. As per a report by Colliers International, the commercial capital of India registered a record over 2.93 million sq feet of office space absorption in April-June quarter this year, its best performance since January-March 2013.

It has also outperformed many other traditional cities known for high business activity, of late. More importantly, there are multiple demand drivers ranging from Banking, Financial Services & Insurance (FSI), IT/ITeS, Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical, Media & Entertainment sector that are bullish on the city. These are the sectors who are at the forefront of high occupancy across the city.

Does it sound like more job creation & economic activity ahead? Doesn’t it sound like more housing demand? Analysts tracking the city property market maintain the fundamentals are heavily loaded in favour of housing demand ahead. The developers also believe it is a matter of one more quarter and the sales figure during the festive season would give an altogether different statistics as far as housing absorption is concerned.

Brotin Banerjee, MD & CEO of Tata Housing agrees that there has been a revival in the fortunes of office space in Mumbai as the city has registered absorption of 2.93 million sq feet with industries like BFSI, IT/ITeS, Manufacturing, Pharma taking over office spaces in the city.  It is currently in sharp contrast to the residential real estate market which is witnessing lower absorption rates. However if commercial sales are to go by, this impetus is directly proportionate to the demand for residential developments.

“With the festival season around the corner in Mumbai, we are expecting an upswing in the property transactions as people prefer buying houses due to the auspiciousness of time. The real estate landscape in Mumbai has reached a plateau but with slew of measures like relaxation in the FDI norms followed by the interest rate cuts and the facilitation of REITs by Government of India and endeavors to introduce clarity through the ‘Real Estate Regulatory Bill’ will help to foster the comeback of housing market in Mumbai region. With festival seasons due to start from September, we are sanguine about the revival of the housing market in Mumbai,” says Banerjee.

David Walker, Managing Director, SARE Homes also points out to the recent report by property consultants JLL that says Mumbai will continue to see an increase in leasing activity by BFSI companies. Major activity will be seen in its sub-markets like the key commercial district, Bandra Kurla complex (BKC), and the western suburbs. Commercial development would continue to define the real estate market in Mumbai, creating a ripple effect on the growth of residential market.

“There is a huge unmet demand for affordable housing in Mumbai. Mumbai is growing in terms of infrastructure and connectivity, and has become a hub for media, entertainment, consultancy and financial services.  This has resulted in job opportunities. It would be prudent to say that demand surged but so have the prices. Looking at the current scenario with an already low profit margin, decline in prices is a farfetched reality. But developers are expected to come up with attractive offers and incentives to accelerate sales during the auspicious festive season,” says Walker.

Manju Yagnik, Vice Chairperson of Nahar Group welcomes the developments and calls it a positive indication that the market is gaining better traction. According to her, we can look forward to better conversions going forward. High absorption of office space indicates healthy outlook in economy and employment, which invariably trickles down to increase in demand for residential property. The important aspect here is revival of the market which bodes well for the entire real estate sector.

“In order to see a genuine housing revival, the government will need to take the initiative by introducing more industry friendly policies which will propel growth and have a ripple effect within the real estate sector. We hope to see some positivity this festive season but most importantly we need to create a conducive environment for growth of the real estate sector,” says Yagnik.

There is no denying that housing revival is directly proportional to the office space consumption. However, it is not just the raw statistics that is giving solace to the residential developers of Mumbai. There are actually three strong indicators that are lending credence to the revival theory of Mumbai housing.

First, it is not just the volume of absorption that is on the higher side; rather the fact that large companies are opting for bigger spaces and even the entire floor plates are being negotiated suggests that revival of housing demand is not far.

Secondly, this demand of office spaces is not single-sector driven but multiple demand drivers are in play today and that suggests the expected growth is not dependent on the fortunes of any one industry. And thirdly, the spirit of festive season with attractive deals and price points across the Mumbai market adds zing to the housing demand.

Habitation challenges galore in Noida Extension

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Noida Extension, Greater Noida Property, Greater Noida West, Delhi-NCR Property, Indian real estate market, India property market, Real estate news portal, real estate website, Real estate news in India, Track2Media Research, Track2Realty, NRI property market, Investment in Delhi-NCRNo other residential micro market of India has arguably weathered as many challenges and controversies as Noida Extension. Its inception as a separate zone, other than Noida & Greater Noida, did lend credence to conspiracy theories against the farmers that culminated into land acquisition litigation. Since then it has been a sordid saga of project delivery uncertainties and homebuyers endless wait; not to speak of the additional charges levied as against the compensation amount hiked to the farmers.

Yet, Noida Extension is getting ready to be home to thousands by the end of this year. The well-planned region otherwise, the micro market still stands as a ‘no man’s land’ with not even an official pin code being given to the place.

From the standpoint of urban planning, it has the higher density of population than Noida or Greater Noida with around three lakh apartments under construction. The basic infrastructure is still very much a challenge and officially it is work in progress in Noida Extension. While the Greater Noida Authority (GNIDA) has laid power cables and built substations, the road network is still in a bad shape for habitation of nearly one lakh people very soon. There is only one school ready and the government officials claim land has been allotted for a few more as well as a hospital.

The GNIDA officials say water supply provisions for individual plot owners are in place, but for group housing societies, it is a builder’s responsibility. The industry body CREDAI does not seem to think it is their responsibility to take up the matter with the authorities. As a matter of fact, the CREDAI President Geetamber Anand even refused to speak on whether Noida Extension can be called habitation-ready.

The market is nevertheless going to be the address of those middle class who could not afford in any other part of Delhi-NCR. Most of the developers who started the projects early in the year 2010 are closer to delivery and many of them would offer the possession by early 2016. So, in all nearly 50000 to 60000 flats would be ready for delivery by that time.

In terms of its appreciation potential, the average salaried-middle class homebuyers got a shock in July this year, when the property consultant JLL in a report declared Noida Extension as high-risk zone and advised the homebuyers to stay away. The report had said that with around 2 lakh apartments coming up the market is not likely to appreciate. It seems now that Noida Extension is getting ready to deliver thousand of apartments, the outlook towards the market is changing.

Santhosh Kumar, CEO – Operations & International Director, JLL India says  that with the infrastructure developments happening in the region, and with better connectivity to Delhi and Gurgaon, Noida Extension is ready for habitation. With the rate cuts and cheaper housing loans, demand is going to be high in that region. Both the primary and luxury residential markets segments have high potential.

“At current estimates, around 21,000 units should be delivered by the end of the year. However, some projects may still miss the deadline. At a rough estimate, around 15-18 thousand units are likely to be delivered. The infrastructural developments in Noida, Greater Noida and Noida Extension are well planned, with road and metro corridors. Hence, there will not be much impact as far as the load on infrastructure is concerned,” says Kumar.

Nikhil Hawelia, Managing Director of Hawelia Group that is getting ready to deliver a project in Noida Extension early next year is bullish on the market. According to him, going with the present situation a number of developers has already started giving possession of residential units in different projects in Noida Extension. The region is on the fast track of progress. Great connectivity & infrastructure with required facilities have made this region a leading real estate market today. Already near to 300-400 families have moved and living here. At the same time the other related developments which are necessary for a comfortable and hassle free living are taking shape speedily.

“With the kind of development taking place in this region, it is undoubtedly all set to become an ideal destination for habitation by addressing all the required necessary facilities for a community living. Currently, basic daily needs are being addressed but it will take another 10-12 months for major facilities to be fully functional in the area. As of now, receiving a courier to your home address is a challenge in the existing scenario. Local transport facilities from authorities and state government are still not functional. Installation of a landline phone connection or internet facilities which are the necessity of today’s modern habitable living are still the concerns,” admits Hawelia.

Urban planning fundamentals suggest that for a city to grow as a residential or commercial hub and to lure its potential customers, there is the need to set in place its basic infrastructure and facilities which are the factors considered pivotal in decision making. Can Noida Extension be termed as investment magnet from that given benchmark? The opinion is divided but on paper there is definitely detailed planning of infrastructure, including the road connectivity network, sewage & sanitation, electrical, etc.

The developers active in the market assert that with a lot of developments across various sectors, and metro connectivity to all key destinations, this region will not add up to the load on infrastructure. They maintain it will become one of the fastest developing sub-cities in the NCR. Also in line to the residential developments, the required commercial developments, educational institutes, health & medical facilities and office & IT spaces are already part of the planning by GNIDA.

On the eve of festive season, as many of the homebuyers were evaluating their work-life balance post shifting to the new homes in Noida Extension, there came another blow to dampen the spirit. The Allahabad High Court ordered the demolition of numerous realty projects launched by various real estate developers including Supertech, Amrapali and Jagat Taran. The demolition of the high-rise building projects located in the Patwari Village of Greater Noida came in light of the fact that they are situated nearby graveyard areas, which according to the High Court, is illegal and therefore stand to be demolished accordingly.

The final vote of confidence, if not verdict, on Noida Extension is yet to come. However, within the built environment of Indian real estate everyone continues to whisper that Noida Extension has been a thriller micro market that has scripted many thickened plots.