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The Delhi Metro has been a boon for the residents of the National Capital Region (NCR), providing connectivity to various parts of the city and in turn, boosting real estate development. Now, the authorities in the NCR have chalked up numerous plans for the extension of this network, to connect the outskirts of the city. This could serve to improve infrastructure in the regions along its route and also lessen the burden on other modes of transport, like roads.
The recently extended Magenta Line, for example, will reduce the travel time between south Delhi and west Delhi, between Noida and Gurugram, and between Faridabad and Noida. The traffic coming from Dwarka will now get diverted after a 20-minute ride to/from Janakpuri. Earlier, it was Rajiv Chowk or Mandi House, where one had to alight from the metro to reach south Delhi. Now, they can do so at Janakpuri also, thus, decongesting the already busy station of Rajiv Chowk. Metro connectivity between Hauz Khas and Janakpuri West, at present, requires people to take two lines and change lines at Rajiv Chowk. This takes almost 55 minutes. After the inauguration of the Janakpuri West-Kalkaji Mandir stretch of the Magenta Line, the same travelling time for a passenger will be less than 30 minutes. The Magenta Line extension also connects the important hubs in south Delhi, including the IIT and JNU with Noida, west Delhi and Gurugram. This could ease traffic congestion in south Delhi considerably, as people switch to the metro, to reach offices in Noida and Gurugram from Delhi.
Delhi metro extension: Impact on travel and traffic
According to architect Mitu Mathur, director of GPM Architects and Planners, the extension of the Delhi Metro, will have a considerable impact on the relationship of Noida with the city.
“Currently, Noida is disconnected from Delhi, due to the Yamuna river and is primarily accessed by the DND Flyover and Mahamaya Flyover, via Kalindi Kunj. The metro connectivity, will not just bridge the gap, but also change people’s perception towards Noida. A lot of the traffic, which people face while commuting from Ring Road to Noida, will be alleviated and the travel time will be significantly shorter with the metro. Botanical Garden will become a commuter’s hub, as it is a confluence of east, south and central Delhi, practically connecting Karol Bagh and Connaught Place (central), Ghaziabad and Karkardooma (in the east) and IIT, Nehru Place, etc. (in the south). This will have a positive impact on the real estate sector in Noida and Greater Noida,” explains Mathur.
Metro and its impact on real estate prices in Delhi-NCR
“Transit infrastructure is the lifeblood of any real estate market, because it opens up newer areas and increases the viability of established ones, by making them more accessible. When newer areas open up for real estate development, they invariably become venues for affordable housing and this has a dampening effect on property prices in the more central areas,” says Santhosh Kumar, vice-chairman, ANAROCK Property Consultants.
Abhishek Singh, chief operations officer, Paarth Infrabuild Pvt Ltd, points out that a large part of the stretch, where the Delhi Metro extension will reach, comprises of households from the middle to upper-income segment and with the commencement of operations, accessibility will improve. “Even though supply constraints exist and demand in the property market remains sluggish, the metro will escalate rental values. Redevelopment of properties is on the rise, especially along these stretches. Capital values, however, may not move up substantially, as the same would have already been captured,” he adds.
Mathur, however, feels that as new development opportunities are very limited, there will be an increase in the existing property prices and efforts to extract more potential from individual land parcels, in terms of greater FAR and hence, more saleable area. “Also, there will be opportunities for various types of real estate, like mix-use complexes, multi-level car parking facilities, serviced apartments, etc.,” says Mathur.
Delhi Metro: Future projects
While the Magenta Line is a big step forward, to decongest the roads and the load on certain metro hubs, the government is also working on Phase-IV of the Delhi Metro, which will connect UP and Haryana with the major hubs in Delhi. The proposed plan includes constructing the Noida-Jewar Airport Blue Line extension; the 59-km-long Pink Line extension to the Loni area of Ghaziabad; extension of the metro line from Vaishali to Mohan Nagar and Noida Sector 62; and in Haryana, an extension to Sonepat via Bawana, Narela and Kundli Industrial Area. These recent initiatives of the Delhi Metro, have the potential to make the NCR a compact place, where people have the liberty to travel on-schedule and say goodbye to long traffic jams on the road. “Provided this tremendous opportunity is carefully utilised, through guidelines and norms, along with better infrastructure for pedestrians, cyclists and low-income groups, examples of safe, secure and thriving community spaces can be created,” concludes Mathur.