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Punjab & Haryana HC finds favour for allowing Stilt Parking with 3-4 Stores in Chandigarh: Notice issued to UT and Union

Chandigarh, December 9, 2021 (Yes Punjab News)
In a Civil Writ Petition moved by social activist Hemant Goswami, the High Court found substance in the contentions forwarded by the petitioners advocate APS Shergill that Stilt parking along with at-least three stories must be allowed by Chandigarh Administration to address the parking issues and to retain the progressive character of Chandigarh.

The writ petition prayed for specific directions, demanding that “the respondent to ensure that as per their own announcement(s) and policy declaration of allowing Stilt Parking in residential plots of Chandigarh, proper, practical and futuristic changes in the building bylaws and architectural guidelines and plans are immediately put in place, with either not considering the Stilt area in the total FAR, or with such enhanced FAR & additional building height, which is required wherever Stilt Parking is allowed; and thereby approve the new and/or reconstructed building accordingly.”

The petition further demanded that “The respondents should allow at least 50% reduction in House Tax and/or such other incentives, as already announced by them in the 2017 policy, for all such new/ reconstructed resident units / apartments where additional arrangement for parking is made, whether at the Stilt level, or otherwise.”

Petitioner Hemant Goswami said that allowing stilt with upto four stories is a step in the right direction as it will help Chandigarh take care of the parking problem and also address the issue of the growing population.

Goswami added that all over the country Stilt with four stories are considered low rise building and country wide experience has shown that allowing Stilt at the ground level is effective in addressing road-side parking problem; as Chandigarh Administration in its own parking policy has stated that a typical vehicle runs for only 1 hour in a day and remains parked for 23 hours. Stilt in new construction will resolve the parking woes of the resident as currently all roads are obstructed by parked cars.

Advocate APS Shergill pointed out that the 2017 and 2020 parking policies both mention that Stilt parking would be allowed at the ground level and the MC will also give a concession in house tax wherever Stilt is constructed. He further mentioned that as per the 2017 Chandigarh Building Rules, stilt floors have been allowed and the rules specifically read that “Stilt parking shall be allowed within the permissible ground coverage” and clarifies that Still shall not be part of the total FAR (Floor Area Ratio).

On the concern of the bench about this being violative of the Chandigarh Master Plan, APS Shergill specifically painted out the definition of the High Rise Building in the 2017 Building rules which states that building height upto 15 meter without Stilt and 17.5 meter with Stilt wouldn’t be considered High Rise building.

The court also took note of the fact that Clause 2(vi) of the 2017 building rules mention that where there is ambiguity or the Chandigarh rules are silent, the provisions of National Building Code and Model Building Bye Laws 2016 shall prevail; which allows upto 4 stories and Stilt Parking under the low rise category.

The High Divisional Bench of Justice TS Dhindsa & VS Bharatwaj issued notice of motion to the Union of India, Chandigarh Administration and Chandigarh Municipal Cooperation for 21st of March 2021.

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