Delhi Master Plan 2041 intends to transform land, water, air in the city for promising tomorrow

New Delhi: The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) opened the most-awaited draft of the Delhi Master Plan, 2041 (DMP) for public opinion and is inviting suggestions, feedbacks and objections for the next 45 days.

The Master Plan for Delhi is one of the key instruments that facilitate Delhi’s development by assessing the present condition and guiding how to achieve the desired development.

“Foster a Sustainable, Liveable and Vibrant Delhi” is the aim of the Delhi Master Plan 2041, which was released last week.

The first-ever draft of the master plan for Delhi was put together in 1962, followed by the master plans of 2001 and 2021. As per the DDA, anchor agency for the master plan, these plans contain the roadmap for the city’s development for the next 20 years and each new master plan is “an extensive modification of the previous plan document”.

According to the draft, DMP 2041’s implementation being the “collective responsibility of all agencies involved in the development of Delhi”, which includes the Centre, the government of the NCT of Delhi, landowning agencies, regulators and local bodies.

DMP 2041 comprises two volumes, namely “Vision 2041 and Enabling Policy Framework” and “Spatial Development Strategy and Action Plan”. While the first volume focuses upon the current demographic and economic status of the city, the second volume highlights the major strategies and detailed provisions “covering both greenfield and brownfield development in the city”. 

Direct link to Delhi Master Plan 2041

While the master plan touches upon every aspect of city life, the key takeaways concern the strategies to mitigate air and water pollution and improve housing.

Vehicular pollution is a major focus of DMP 2041 as the city has more than 10 million vehicles, the highest in India. Another major reason to include vehicular pollution in the vital discussion is because every year emissions from cars combine with fumes from stubble burning in farmlands in Haryana and Punjab to make the air toxic to breathe in the Capital. 

To address vehicular pollution, “detailed strategies for reducing the number of daily vehicular trips and encouraging use of public transport and active travel” have been thought up. 

This discussion is the main reason why, for the first time, DMP has put an exclusive section on the planning pool of shared mobility systems. The plan highlights the system to reduce the effort in undertaking a public transport trip, reduce private trips as a share of total motorised trips and lower per capita emissions.

The DMP 2041 plan highlights six major objectives which are as follows:

Objective 1: Prioritizing Environmental Sustainability –To prioritize environmental concerns for the development of Delhi and focus on rejuvenation of natural assets, reducing pollution, greening of built environments, supporting green economies like urban farming, and creating a diverse portfolio of natural and planned open spaces. 

Objective 2: Facilitating Economic Development –To promote clean economies, facilitate a unique economic role for Delhi while ensuring symbiotic linkages with NCR, improve the overall investment climate and support a variety of work and workspace typologies. 

Objective 3: Enhancing Heritage, Culture and Public Life– To protect and enhance heritage and cultural fabric, build strong economic linkages and create opportunities for cultural experience, tourism and active public life.

Objective 4: Improving Housing and Social Infrastructure – To meet a variety of housing demands across different income groups and typologies, promote regeneration of older built fabric, fulfil demands for social infrastructure in dense areas of the city, and foster walkable mix-use neighbourhoods. 

Objective 5: Moving Towards Low-Carbon Mobility –To encourage modal shift in favour of public and shared modes of transport, bring homes and jobs closer to mass transit, reduce vehicular congestion and provide efficient, affordable and green mobility options. 

Objective 6: Developing Resilient Physical Infrastructure –To promote a sustainable approach towards use of resources like water and energy, facilitate adequate and uninterrupted services so that the city is ready in terms of digital infrastructure and resilience to shocks and disasters.

DMP 2041 seeks to take forward the “innovative paradigms… and introduces relevant policies… to nurture the future growth of the city”. DMP 2041 puts forth a promising vision, and it will be interesting to look forward to the final notification that aims to incorporate further changes through objections and suggestions. 

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