BANK­ING ON ED­U­CA­TION

Ed­u­ca­tion-cen­tric real es­tate de­vel­op­ment can­not trans­late to long-term gains for the realty mar­ket un­less sup­ported by man­u­fac­tur­ing, IT and good in­fra­struc­ture

HT Estates - - NEWS - Van­dana Ram­nani

Can de­vel­op­ments in the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor help Kundli get into higher gear or will it re­quire the sup­port of other forces such as man­u­fac­tur­ing, IT, and up-an­drun­ning in­fra­struc­ture as seen in Greater Noida and Pune?

The Ra­jiv Gandhi Ed­u­ca­tion City (RGEC) at Kundli in Soni­pat is en­vis­aged as a hub for higher learn­ing and a cen­tre for re­search in cut­ting edge tech­nolo­gies such as nan­otech­nol­ogy, biotech­nol­ogy, ge­net­ics en­gi­neer­ing and medicine.

Land mea­sur­ing 2,007.60 acres has al­ready been ac­quired for the ed­u­ca­tion city.

Real es­tate ex­perts say that the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor pro­vides sig­nif­i­cant op­por­tu­ni­ties for de­vel­op­ers to cre­ate an as­set class in line with res­i­den­tial, com­mer­cial, re­tail and hos­pi­tal­ity. How­ever, it can­not be con­sid­ered a sole driver for res­i­den­tial real es­tate. Most large ed­u­ca­tion cam­pus de­vel­op­ments are cen­tered along the pe­riph­eral lo­ca­tions of cities and pro­vide hos­tel ac­com­mo­da­tion for both stu­dents and staff.

Ad­di­tion­ally, cities like Delhi and Pune, which have large stu­dent pop­u­la­tions and rental ac­com­mo­da­tion for them, lack vol­umes to drive res­i­den­tial real es­tate de­mand.

“There­fore, em­ploy­ment hubs (man­u­fac­tur­ing and ser­vice sec­tors) with growth in pop­u­la­tion are key drivers for res­i­den­tial real es­tate. A case in point is Hin­je­w­adi in Pune where the Ra­jiv Gandhi In­fotech Park spawned res­i­den­tial space along with a host of higher ed­u­ca­tion in­sti­tutes,” says An­shul Jain of DTZ In­dia.

Ed­u­ca­tion-cen­tric real es­tate de­vel­op­ment is still at a nascent stage in In­dia. Prox­im­ity of ma­jor Tier-1 cities and avail­abil- ity of large land parcels have been the pri­mary rea­sons for emer­gence of Pune and Greater Noida as ed­u­ca­tion hubs.

Jain points out that ed­u­ca­tion-cen­tric real es­tate de­vel­ops in var­i­ous stages. While the first phase is fo­cused on cre­ation of ed­u­ca­tion in­sti­tutes and its an­cil­lary ser­vices (hos­tel, staff hous­ing, etc), the sec­tor has the po­ten­tial to cre­ate ad­di­tional rev­enue-gen­er­at­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties such as bud­get ho­tels, re­tail, en­ter­tain­ment and re­cre­ation fa­cil­i­ties, etc. As a re­sult, real es­tate de­vel­op­ment turns out to be a longterm propo­si­tion.

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