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CAR PARKING - A MAJOR THREAT TO MUMBAI

The mounting population with progressive life style in major cities of India has now become a major threat for car parking issue which we confront almost every day in any corner of the city. Besides the problem of space for cars moving on the road, signaling and the greater issue is the space for a parked vehicle considering that private vehicles remain parked for most of their time.

Multi-level Parking systems for sometime have provided relief since they come with a number of advantages i.e. optimal utilization of space, lower maintenance and operational cost, lower construction cost, secure and environment-friendly nature, comfortable for the drivers, cost saving for builders by saving height or depth and many more.

Today, the need of the hour is to address the issue of parking or else, it may become unbearable for vehicle owners in the days to come. While all the other aspects of the public transportation system are generally addressed, the softer issue like car parking is being conveniently ignored by the civic authorities. This is experienced daily in lanes, by-lanes, offices, malls and even the Mantralaya. It is time to find viable options to the problem.

In Housing Societies in Mumbai, the Developers provide a parking space as per the provisions of the Development Control Regulations (DCR). Parking space is not counted in FSI calculation and is the property of the Society. Parking space limitation (numbers) is decided by the Lay-Out-Plan (LOP) as sanctioned by the civic body i.e. MCGM. There are various types of car parking in Housing Societies which are explained hereunder:

STILT PARKING - A pair of poles with foot-rests, enabling the user to walk with feet at a distance above the ground; piles or posts on which a building stands.

OPEN PARKING - An area forming an integral part of a plot left open to the sky.

GARAGE – PRIVATE - A closed and lockable premises in a Society being a part of FSI spared for housing a car.

GARAGE - PUBLIC – It means a building or portion thereof, designed other than as a private garage, operated for gain, designed and or used for repairing, servicing, hiring, selling or storing or parking motor driven or other vehicles.

PODIUM PARKING – It is a building or part thereof which is designed specifically by constructing drive way slop/ramp on a number of floors or levels on which parking takes place.

BASEMENT PARKING – The basement parking space type refers to parking located below grade within an occupied building. This involves additional excavation, structural frame, floor slabs above, sloped vehicle access ramps and basement perimeter walls and partitions separating parking from other building enclosed areas.

AUTOMATED PARKING – An automated (car) parking system (APS) is a mechanical system designed to minimize the area and/or volume required for parking cars. Like a multi-story parking garage, an APS provides parking for cars on multiple levels stacked vertically to maximize the number of parking spaces while minimizing land usage. The APS, however, utilizes a mechanical system to transport cars to and from parking spaces (rather than the driver) in order to eliminate much of the space wasted in a multi-story parking garage.

STAKED/MULTI LEVEL PARKING - Auto Stacker is a machine that parks cars in a stack, using a combination of conveyor belts and lifts to move vehicles from ground level to an upper level. It is, effectively, an automated multi-storey car park and is often found in car showrooms, workshops and petrol stations.

PUBLIC PARKING PLACE (PPP) - Under DC Rule 33(24), new constructions on a plot of over 1,000 sq. meters in the island city and over 2,000 sq. meters in the suburbs can get FSI of up to 4 if the Developers construct over 50 parking lots and hands them over to the BMC for free. Following this, many Developers had come forward to avail the extra FSI. However, the Development Control Rules restrict the construction of such parking lots up to ground plus four floors.

ON STREET PARKING - On street parking means the vehicles are parked on the sides of the street itself. This will be usually controlled by government agencies itself. Common types of on-street parking are as listed below. As per IRC the standard dimensions of a car is taken as 5× 2.5 m and that for a truck is 3.75× 7.5 m.

OFF STREET PARKING - Off street parking means vehicles are parked off the street itself i.e. in gullies. This will be usually controlled by private commercial agencies itself.

PARALLEL PARKING - The vehicles are parked along the length of the road. Here there is no backward movement involved while parking or non-parking the vehicle. Hence, it is the safest parking from the accident perspective. However, it consumes the maximum curb length and therefore, only a minimum number of vehicles can be parked for a given kerbed length. This method of parking produces least obstruction to the on-going track on the road since least road width is used.

ANGULAR PARKING - The vehicles are parked at an angle. It may be a 30 degree angle or 45 degree. The vehicles can be easily reversed if parked at an angle. Hence, proving as an efficient Parking System in case of vehicular circulation, the major drawback of “Angular Parking System” is that it requires larger space for parking than required for parallel parking. Hence this system is adopted where the space is available in plenty.

a) Parking Rules
Co-operative Housing Society can and should frame parking rules. Normally the Housing Society should ask for the details of the vehicles to be parked including a certified copy of the RC Book should be insisted upon from the member while submitting the application for parking slot. After receipt of the above said paper/documents the Society should allot a parking slot. The Society may even allot a sticker and/or may even instruct the member that without the parking sticker the vehicle shall not be allowed to be parked in the Society compound.

b) Policy of allotment of parking spaces and stilts
Under Section 78 of MOFA Act, The allotment of parking space/ stilts shall be made by the Managing Committee on the basis of ‘first come first served’ for unsold and available parking spaces. However, in case of parking space/stilt allotted by the Society, the member shall have no right to sell or transfer the said allotted parking space/stilt to anybody.

c) Applications for allotment of stilts or parking spaces
Under Section 83 of MOFA, The member desiring to have a stilt or a parking space may make an application to the Secretary of the Society giving necessary details. The procedure for disposal of applications for permission under this Bye-Law as laid down under the Bye laws No.65 shall be followed by the Secretary and the Managing Committee of the Society.

d) Eligibility for allotment of stilts or parking spaces
Under Section 81 of MOFA, A member having a motor vehicle will only be eligible to have a stilt or any other type of parking space. No member shall normally be eligible for being allotted more than one stilt or a parking space for parking the car owned by him. If any stilts or parking spaces remain non-allotted for want of applicants for allotment, a second or third stilt or parking space may be allotted to the same member who has earlier been allotted the stilt or any other type of parking space. Such allotment of 2nd or 3rd stilts/or parking space shall be made on year to year basis provided the same is not required by another member who is not allotted even a single stilts/or any other type of parking space. Under Section 82 of MOFA, In case the numbers of vehicles of eligible members are in excess then the available parking space/stilts, the Managing Committee shall allot such parking space/stilts by “lot” on yearly basis.

e) Car Parking Slots
Sale of car parking slots is unlawful and illegal under the law. It would be of interest to note that the definition of flat in the Model Bye-Laws includes a godown but does not include an open car parking space. It is an open secret that Developers sale open car parking on cash payment basis. Conflicting judgments have been given by Courts on matter related to car parking. In the landmark judgment delivered by the Maharashtra State Co-operative Appellate Court Mumbai in the case of M/s Prakash Auto v/s Aranja Arcade Premises Co-operative Society Ltd. & Ors has prevented the Developers from allotting-selling or otherwise disposing of the disputed car parking spaces. The implications of the above said judgment is that even if the Developers sell car parking space in the basement, a Housing Society is entitled to allot the car parking space in the basement to their members on the basis of the resolution passed by the Society at its General Body Meeting. Now no Developers can sell parking space under stilts separately, the Bombay High Court has ruled in M/s Nahalchand Laloochand Pvt. Ltd., that a stilt parking space is a common parking space available to members of the Housing Society and not an additional premises or space available for the Developers to sale either to any member of the Society or any outsider and further clarified that even under DC rules the Developers had to provide car parking spaces wherever the carpet area of the flat is more than 35 sq. meters and estoppels do not work against statutory provisions. Apart from this fact, the Court has also considered the definition of flat under Maharashtra Ownership of Flats Act (MOFA) which includes open and any other type of parking spaces in area if the flat wherever area is counted as super-built up.

f) Parking Space Enclosed or unenclosed, covered or open area sufficient in size to park vehicles: parking space shall be served by a driveway connecting them with a street or alley and permitting ingress or egress of vehicles. Under Section 80 of MOFA, marking of parking spaces or stilts is the way that no inconvenience would be caused to any of the member of the Society. Where any stilts have been built or open space in the Society’s compound is available for parking of cars, the Society shall number the stilt or the open space for the purpose of no disputes caused between the members of the Society. As mutually decided, it is necessary that the adequate number of car parking space should be kept exclusively for the guest parking and emergency/medical services of the Society as required under the prevailing MCGM Rules and Regulations and the such parking space shall be handed over to the Society upon completion of redevelopment and shall not be sold to anyone. Society would be the absolute owner of such guest parking and emergency/medical services. Under Section 79 of MOFA, the restrictions are given on use of car parking and stilt parking that ‘No member shall be entitled to utilize more parking spaces/stilts than what is allotted to him by the Managing Committee or which he has purchased’. As per the Development Control Regulations for Greater Mumbai 1991, one is parking space for every 8 sq. meters of the floor area up to 800 sq. meters and one parking space for every additional 160 sq. meters of area is required to be provided. For hotels, one parking space for every 60 sq. meters of the floor area is required to be provided. For Grade I Restaurant, one parking space for every 25 sq. meters of area of the restaurant including hall, dining room, pantry and bar must be provided. For the Grade II and Grade III hotels, the requirement is one parking space for every 80 sq. meters of the areas.

g) Parking Charges
Under Section 84 of the MOFA, Every member who has allotted the stilt or the any other type of parking space shall be required to pay the parking charges at such rate as may be decided by the General Body of the Society at its meeting, irrespective of the fact whether the member actually parks his motor vehicle or not. The Society can recover different rates for different types of motorized vehicles. The General Body of the Society can definitely fix up the charges for the 2nd and 3rd car etc. Therefore, the member will have to pay the parking charges for a particular month irrespective of the fact that he has parked the vehicle for a few days. Where a member has been allotted more than one stilt parking space, he shall pay parking charges in respect of every such stilt or any other type of parking space as decided at the General Body Meeting.

h) Commercial use of Garage
Garage allotted for car parking cannot be used for commercial purpose except with the permission from MCGM. At the time of the construction of garages an undertaking has to be given to the Municipal Corporation that they will be used only for car parking. If Society uses the car parking for commercial purpose it breaches under Co-operative Laws there is also violation of the MCGM Rules.

i) Stilt Parking
No member can cover a parking stilt; it is open space. It needs to be emphasized that while submitting the plans certain areas are shown as open space and parking stilt is normally shown as open space. The open spaces are not included in FSI calculations.

j) Criminal case against the Developers
Many times Developers gives false promises to the flat purchasers and also do not comply with their statutory obligations as are stipulated in the MOFA, 1963 (The Maharashtra Ownership Flats Regulation of the Promotion of Construction, Sale, Management and Transfer). In such circumstances the options available to the flat purchasers/ Society include filing a complaint in the Consumer Court as well as initiating criminal action before the criminal court against the Developers. Even selling away the car parking is one of the offences under the MOFA. The Society can file criminal complaint against such Developers under various sections of Indian Penal Code.

BMC’S PARKING RULES FOR HOUSING SOCIETIES

While buying a flat, one should keep in mind that parking is either stilt parking which is in the basement of the building or open parking.

Find out from the Developer if he/she is selling the space or not. By law, a Developer can only sell flats. Unless the Developer has used FSI in creating stilt parking, which is usually FSI-free, he cannot legally sell the space.

By law, a Developer can only sell flats that have been constructed with FSI. Open spaces such as terraces or parking lots have to be conveyed to the cooperative Society.

REDEVELOPMENT OF CESSED BUILDINGS UNDER DCR 33(7) - PARKING PROVISIONS

The Car Parking Rules per tenement for tenanted buildings which are categorized under cessed buildings as per DCR 33 (7) in south Mumbai while undergoing redevelopment are eligible for car parking as per DCR provisions since 12th August 2009.

One Car Parking Space for every:

1) Tenement with carpet area up to 45 sq. meters (485 sq. ft)

2) 2/3 Tenement with carpet area exceeding 45 sq. meters but not exceeding 100 sq. meters.

3) 1/2 tenement with carpet area exceeding 100 sq. meters.

In other words; one car park per tenement up to 485 sq. ft carpet area is compulsory.

However, if carpet area of tenement exceeds 100 sq. meters (1076 sq. ft), then two car parking spaces per tenement shall have to be provided.

In addition to what has been specified above in Para 1) 2) & 3) additional 25% parking space over and above the total requirement is also required to be provided as Visitor's Parking.

 

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