Life on the Outskirts of Pune

When it comes to buying a luxury villa to reside in, there are some who tend to thrive off a bustling city life and choose to live their lives in concrete high-rise structures in the heart of the city. And, then there is the other lot of home buyers who prefer a quiet almost country life, away from the commotion of the city.

A city life, while extremely vibrant, also poses new-age urban challenges to deal with every day. From routine traffic snarls and air and noise pollution to cramped spaces, the sheer dearth of open public spaces and increasing crime, the list of urban woes often tends to be endless. An idea of a rural life on the contrary is a welcome break from the manic pace of the city. A country or rural life offers immense peace of mind, relaxation and quiet, with the opportunity to participate in a host of outdoor activities. The flip-side of leading a natural life away from the city however is the lack of opportunity to frequently participate in social activities and the ease of daily conveniences that in the city are only a walk or a phone call away. To tackle this situation and to enjoy the best of both the worlds – rural and urban, a large number of denizens these days choose to live on the immediate outskirts of the city.

Dwelling on the immediate outskirts of the city does not however imply that residents do not negotiate traffic conditions in the city to and from work. But, the joy associated with getting home to a space where they can listen to the birds, breathe in the crisp air and bask in the glory of lushness all around, far outlives the drudgery of daily commutes. Suburban residents living on the outskirts also enjoy the luxury of larger living spaces, something that is almost next to impossible in the heart of the city.

Pune, a growing metropolis like many others, bears the brunt of rapid urbanisation. With the city almost spilling over to its brim, areas such as Bavdhan, Bhugaon, Pirangut, Marunji, Punavale, Wagholi and others are fast seeing the emergence of residential developments, complemented by the arrival of IT parks and offices and SEZs and growth of trade and business.

The south-west corridor of Pune comprises of areas such as Bhugaon and Pirangut. In the recent past, this corridor has witnessed an increased investment activity significantly around Bhugaon and its peripheries. This is not a very surprising trend given that the region enjoys not just scenic natural beauty, but is also easily accessible from popular business and residential hubs such as Kothrud, Chandni Chowk, Baner, Balewadi, Wakad and Hinjawadi. Naturally, this region has demonstrated a definite growth potential, from the point of view of leisure (as a weekend home destination) as well as to the end-user and the investor. This in turn has resulted in a demand for and the emergence of high-end or luxury developments such as apartments and villas.

The downside of all this the development and demand (for housing) that riddles the south-west corridor, is enormous traffic snarls and road accidents. Chandni Chowk that is regarded as a major entry and exit point on NH4 for these prominent areas is witness to the movement of close to 1.60 lakh vehicles each day. The result of this has been numerous road accidents (reported to be over 69 serious accidents and over 35 fatalities since 2012) and unruly traffic situations since a number of years. But, this is all set to change now, with a massive decongestion exercise that has been planned. According to reports, the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has given its approval and cleared the decks for an ambitious project that suggests the construction of a flyover to connect Mulshi and Kothrud, a grade separator on Paud Road to enable smooth traffic in the direction of Mulshi, another proposed flyover from NDA towards Mumbai, a vehicular underpass and developed plan roads (DP roads) that will be laid out along the highway to decongest the chowk. Upon completion, connectivity to this corridor is estimated to improve manifold, thereby naturally leading to asset (property) appreciation in the region.

With the proposed infrastructural development in the pipeline, the outskirts of Pune, especially towards the south-west can expect a further growth in residential development. This is where investments and funds are currently being diverted, in search of verdant pastures. This is the future where residents will enjoy the luxury daily exercise and walks, without being engulfed in vehicular pollution; this is where children will play and breathe fresh air each day and families will walk their pets. Finally, this is where people will enjoy luxury that is rare!

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