Chennai Builder to Promote Affordable Apartments
Monday, January 25, 2010
CHENNAI: Owning a dream home for many a poor Chennaiite could soon become a reality with a leading builder, Khivraj Estates, all set to promote a low-cost residential project at Thiruvottriyur, 10 km from the city centre, at Rs 4 lakh per 269-sq ft studio apartment. The project will come up in an area where a 650-sq ft apartment costs at least Rs 15 lakh at present.
Khivraj MD Ajit Chordia says he embarked on the project drawing inspiration from Tata’s Nano Homes and Patrimonio Hoy, a cooperative initiative of Cemex, world’s leading building material supplier and the third largest cement manufacturer, started in Mexico in 1998 to provide shelter to 20 million homeless people in that country. In the 11 years of its existence, Patrimonio Hoy has spread to more than 100 centres in Colombia, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Venezuela providing quality shelters to more than 2.08 lakh families.
Chordia has acquired a 1.1 acre plot close to Thiruvottriyur railway station, where he plans to promote 100 such dwelling units in the first phase. The bigger apartments, each measuring 485 sq ft, would cost Rs 8.7 lakh though. “Based on its success, we propose to expand it to another four acres abutting the first phase,” he told TOI.
He has engaged a team to bring down the cost of construction. “As of now, the overall cost works out to Rs 1,800 per sq ft. But we will bring it down to Rs 1,500 per sq ft at least for our own employees, who buy from us,” he said. Hoping that at least 10% of them would opt for the project, Chordia said, “We know about their skills and many of them can do works like interior painting and electrical wiring. By adopting high levels of standardisation and using pre-fabricated material, the cost can be reduced further.”