MUMBAI: If developers in the city had Allahdin’s magic lamp, just what
would they ask of the genie? A flavour of this was available at a recent
pre-budget real estate forum organised by the Economic Times.

Captioned, “ET Think Turf”, the session was chaired by Architect Hafeez
Contractor, the Hafeez Contractor, the forum discussed how Slum
rehabilitation and redevelopment could be used effectively to
accommodate the rising numbers of slum dwellers and population in
dilapidated buildings. Increased Floor Space Index, rental housing would
be other ways to sort out the problem of housing.

Speaking at the forum, Niranjan Hiranandani, MD, Hiranandani Developers'
Pvt Ltd said the housing industry needed more direction and leaders of
the stature of Narayan Murthy, who brought a sea change to the IT
sector. The supply of real estate has to grow with the demand. If that
does not happen, it would mean a 20% increase in prices by December '07,
observed Hiranandani. We need to provide for about 18 million people in
the next ten years, and we should begin work now, he said.

The other speakers in the panel including Pujit Agarwal, General
Secretary, Property Redevelopers Association and MD, Orbit Group, Ashish
Raheja , MD, K Raheja Universal, Dharmesh Jain of Nirmal Lifestyle,
Rajiv Sabharwal, Head Retail Assets, ICICI Bank, among others pointed
out that real estate is a fragmented industry and needs more corporates
which will help enrich the experience of the customer.