With an aim to enhance and maintain the aesthetic beauty of the national capital, the Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC), a statutory body formed by an Act of Parliament in 1973, was established in 1974.
Apart from being a regulatory body, the DUAC also acts as the government’s policy advisor and a think-tank. Among its many roles, the DUAC also provides guidance to local bodies on building and engineering operations and scrutinises proposals to carry out any development or redevelopment construction activity in the national capital.
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Functions of the DUAC
* According to the DUAC website, the body was formed, to ‘advise the central government in the matter of preserving, developing and maintaining the aesthetic quality of urban and environmental design within Delhi and to provide advice and guidance to any local body in respect of any project of building operations or engineering operations or any development proposal, which affects or is likely to affect the sky-line or the aesthetic quality of surroundings or any public amenity provided therein’.
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* To scrutinise, approve, reject or modify proposals with respect to the following matters:
- Development of district or civic centres, areas earmarked for government administrative buildings and residential complexes, public parks and gardens.
- Plans, architectural and visual appearance of new buildings in the centres, areas, parks and gardens, including selection of statues, models and fountains, therein.
- Conservation and beautification of monuments, public parks and gardens, including location or installation of fountains or statues.
- Redevelopment of areas under the jurisdiction of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), including Connaught Place Complex, Central Vista, the Lutyens bungalow area, etc.
- Redevelopment of areas in the vicinity of Jama Masjid, Humayun’s Tomb, Red Fort, Old Fort, Qutab, Tuglakabad and other places of historical importance.
- Under-passes, over-passes, street furniture and hoardings.
- Location and plans for power houses, water towers, television and communication towers and other similar structures.
- Any other project or layout, aimed at beautifying Delhi or adding to its cultural vitality or enhancing the quality of the surroundings.
* To promote and secure the development, re-development or beautification, of areas in Delhi where the local bodies have not submitted any such proposals for the same.
This means that the DUAC basically plays a three-fold role as a policy advisor, a regulatory body, as well as a think-tank.
DUAC: Latest news
Suggestions on the New Parliament building
In July 2020, the DUAC gave its approval to the building plan for the proposed new Parliament building, albeit with some suggestions. The commission suggested that there should be provisions for a single, integrated multi-level parking facility, display of public art and appropriate landscaping, to make the new structure ‘aesthetically pleasing’.
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“To ensure smooth accessibility and to address environmental concerns, it was suggested that the local body shall explore the possibility of a multi-level car parking, after identifying a plot of appropriate size and location, in the vicinity, to relocate all the proposed parking in one consolidated plot wherein parking requirements for all users can be accommodated,” the DUAC suggested.
Arrangements should also be made to provide natural light in some blocks, it said. “To improve natural daylighting in the speaker’s chambers and Rajya Sabha chairman’s chambers, it is suggested to explore creating skylights which would ensure that these spaces gain direct natural light/daylight,” it said.
What is DUAC?
The Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC) was established in 1974, to enhance and maintain the aesthetic beauty of the national capital.
What are the duties of the DUAC?
The DUAC plays the role of a policy advisor, a regulatory body and a think-tank.
Where is the DUAC office?
The DUAC is located at Core-6A,UG & First Floor, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, New Delhi-110 003.