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Almost half-a-decade after announcing the construction of a chain of townships under the banner of Sahara City Homes, the project seems to be gathering speed. Sahara has completed the process of acquiring about 11,000 acres which will help kickstart the Phase-I of their project in about 102 cities located in 22 states across the country.

“We have already acquired 11,000 acres needed to build township projects at an investment of Rs 30,000 crore across 102 cities. Work in Lucknow, Indore, Nagpur, Gwalior, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Coimbatore, Aurangabad, Solapur and Ahmedabad have already begun,” said, Surya Vir Singh, head (strategic planning) of Sahara Prime City Ltd.

“We aim to complete the first phase of the township projects in all the 102 cities by 2013-14,” said Mr Singh who was in the city to overlook the construction work of the 104 acre township project in Ahmedabad. According to Mr Singh, the Phase-II of the Sahara City Homes, which will cover 217 cities, is expected to be completed by 2017.

“Within this year we plan to begin construction work of similar townships at Rajkot, Bhavnagar, Porbandar and Jamnagar, after getting the necessary approvals”, he said. The land has been acquired for the project in these cities.

“The projects in Gujarat alone will be worth Rs 10,000 crore,” said Sunder Lal, a senior advisor of the company. The Sahara City Homes at Shella, Ahmedabad, will have one to four bedroom residential units. They will also have duplexes, row houses, villas and bungalows.

“The residential units will be priced between Rs 16 lakh and Rs 1.5 crore (as per the existing prices),” Mr Lal added.

When asked why the projects have been delayed after announcements were made way back in 2003-04, he said: “We were engaged in getting the necessary clearances for the projects, especially issues related to land. Moreover, we have also changed some of the earlier concepts. The townships will now have more green and open spaces. Designed by famous architect Hafeez Contractor, they will be fully air-conditioned and will use European accessories like tiles and sanitarywares.

“Now that we have completed the land acquisition process for the majority of our project we do not think that a subdued market will affect us, Mr Lal said.

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