In a first, Chandigarh Housing Board(CHB) has decided to conduct ‘seismic evaluation’ of its dwelling units. Chandigarh falls in the zone IV seismic zone, which is considered ‘severe’. The move is part of the exercise being undertaken by the board before framing a policy for allowing need-based changes.
The board has developed housing schemes in different sectors, including 29, 41, 40, 44, 43, 45, 47, 38 (west), 51, 55, 56, 63 and Modern Housing Complex, with around 64,000 units of 100 different categories. The board has also developed rehabilitation housing schemes.
For conducting the seismic evaluation, the board has initiated the process for hiring registered structural engineers\firms by floating a tender. The experts will be required to carry out a detailed analysis of the dwelling units as per latest provisions prescribed the latest seismic code. Strength of existing reinforced concrete column (RCC) will also be examined as per the laid down norms.
According to sources, the experts will carry out detailed structural design calculations with the help of Staad, a structural analysis and design computer programme. The firms will also ascertain whether the various additions and alternation done by the owners have impacted the structure stability of the dwelling units.
Over the years, the board has allowed need-based changes in the dwelling units through various orders from time to time, subject to conditions. However, there are many allottees who made additional constructions in their dwelling units which do not fulfil the conditions mentioned in need-based changes and cannot be regularised.
Rajat Malhotra, president, Chandigarh Housing Board Residents’ Welfare Federation, said barring the dwelling units on which additional floor has been constructed are safe. “The number of such houses is less. There is no issue with the structural stability of majority of the houses,” Malhotra said.