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Shifting Focus to Urban Development in UP’s Twin Textile Hubs, Hapur-Pilkhuwa

Further, owners of flats in the Hapur-Pikhuwa region are being encouraged to move in, after beautification and modernization of the surrounding areas. As per her 5-year urban planning for Hapur and Pikhuwa, illegal buildings are being demolished and building map clearance has been simplified. Further, owners of flats in the Hapur-Pikhuwa region are being encouraged to move in, after beautification and modernization of the surrounding areas.
Indian Masterminds Stories

The twin textile hubs – Hapur-Pilkhuwa – of Uttar Pradesh are famous for their beautiful textile products and thriving handloom industries. Yet, both places have very little to offer in terms of urban development. The neighboring cities are well developed, and the contrast is starkly apparent when one enters either Hapur or Pikhuwa. Even after being a part of NCR, these two places haven’t witnessed any real development in terms of urbanization.

However, things seem to be looking up for the twin textile centers now, as the Chairperson of Hapur-Pilkhuwa Development Authority (HPDA), Ms. Archana Verma, IAS, is laying special focus on urban development and have already ushered in many changes in this regard. 

Indian Masterminds spoke to the officer to find out about the changes she has introduced so far.

AUTOMATED MAP CLEARANCE

It is a fact that small measures pave the way for big plans. Ms. Archana Verma is exactly following this way when taking up urbanization of the three districts that fall under HPDA, namely Hapur, Pilkhuwa, and Garh. 

Other than facing nagging issues like lack of parking space, illegal construction of buildings, etc., one major problem that small districts face is not adhering to proper mapping while constructing buildings. Noting this, Ms. Verma is encouraging the people to follow legal norms and get their maps passed before any building construction by making it easier for them through the introduction of a single-window automated map clearance system.

“Things are automated now. We have a single-window clearance system, and the maps can be passed through the government app or website. Things have become easy, and people are also getting drawn towards it,” she said.

REMOVING ILLEGAL CONSTRUCTION 

In the urban planning of a town or a city, certain areas are specially earmarked for use as green belts. However, people illegally encroach those areas, too, and construct structures on them. 

“It gets very difficult for us to evict them from the buildings, it creates many problems. We can’t control everything due to limited resources, so it becomes a race of raising and demolishing. To take care of this, we built master plans for the towns and now things are getting streamlined for the better,” Ms. Verma said.

GOVT FLAT ALLOTMENT

In accordance with the objectives of a 5-year urban planning model being implemented by the officer, unoccupied government flats are being allotted to people. 

When the NCR extension took place, it was assumed that there would be several industries, and a ‘flat culture’ would come into being. Multi-storied buildings mushroomed in the area but the flats in these buildings mostly remained unoccupied, even if they were sold, due to lack of interest and motivation. People just kept them as investments and avoided living in them.

“To boost the moving of people into these buildings, we provided several amenities in the surrounding areas. Earlier, since no one was living there, authorities overlooked the place, resulting in no water, electricity, or management,” Ms. Verma informed.

She invited all the allottees to listen to their problems and find solutions. She further discussed with her team ways to beautify the surrounding areas and create boundaries. And this worked! The flat owners started getting attracted by the sense of security and privacy that the place provided now.

“Previously, only seven flats had been sold in 6-7 years. As a result of the amenities that we started providing in the last year, 100 flats got sold, and people have started living in them!” Ms. Verma told Indian Masterminds.

PLAN FOR RECREATION AREAS

Another aspect that was lacking in Hapur-Pilkhuwa was recreation centers. There was only one developed park for the entire population, and it used to get crowded as a result. 

Realizing the necessity of more recreational areas, Ms. Verma passed an order for the construction of parks in every colony. She also has plans to add more features to the existing main park.

“We will introduce boating and picnic spots in the main City Park for people to spend time with their families. We are also motivating people to come and plant as many trees as possible in green belts. We are introducing several waste-related projects, as well.”

The officer is also planning to construct a three-story commercial mall as there isn’t any in the area. She is in talks with store owners and different brands regarding this. Things are being set into motion, and by April-May, the project will begin taking shape, she informed.


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