Wheels of change: bicycling revolution slowly gathering momentum in India
Besides boosting the last-mile connectivity, cycle sharing expands the catchment areas for a city’s rapid transit systems and also has direct impact on real estate
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Golf homes seem to be the next big thing in Dubai’s real estate. Wi t h t h e D P Wo rl d To u r Championship and the Omega Dubai Desert Classic receiving huge supporters and players year-on-year, builders are now bringing in premium housing for golf aficionados.
Some of the latest golf communities creating a buzz in the market include Arabian Ranches, Emirates Hills, and Jumeirah Golf Estates. About 70% of golf homes sold this year between January and May 2016 were from Arabian Ranches, says a report by Luxhabitat, Dubai’s high- end brokerage firm.
According to Luxhabitat’s luxury sales director, Andrew Cleator, “Golf communities, in general, carry an extra prestige factor, this also usually warrants high quality properties, top class facilities, family community, good accessibility and safe secure environment.”
Buying in a golfing development nearly always adds to the investment security as golfing enthusiasts and end-users looking for tranquil surroundings will always pay a premium to reside in such an environment.
According to Tugba Dogan, a Dubai based consultant, “The premium returns on these golf properties depend on location, quality and views.”
So let’s see what kind of super luxury features some of these properties have
Last mile connectivity! Today it has become one of the most important issues faced by citizens living in urban India, especially the ones dependent on multiple public transport systems for their daily commute.
Our cities are seeing huge investments to uplift and augment their transportation network and are expanding their rapid transit systems. This is leading to an astonishing transportation structure in the country. In spite of all such remarkable developments, t he point of providing affordable and convenient ‘last mile connectivity’ to the public transport networks continues as a comparatively neglected area of focus. Certain part of cities are being served with para-transit modes such as share auto-rickshaws and feeder bus services but these services are limited to a few and selective stations. Similarly, though walking becomes an inevitable last mile connectivity option, it comes with a disclaimer: ‘the local climate, physical condition and distance’.
To overcome this major public concern, our cities are slowly being upgraded with an important strategic initiative to expand their sustainable transport modes termed as cycle sharing system.
Cycle sharing is a public transport system in which people have access to cycles that can be used across a network of closely spaced stations. Cycle sharing is a concept that originated in the 1960s. But it took years to catch on until better technology was developed to provide real-time information about the scheme, tracking the bikes and also protecting the bikes against theft and vandalism.
Atpresent, morethan700cities across the globe have their own cycle-sharing systems, and more
Jumeirah Golf Estates
Jumeirah Golf Estates or JGE is host to the yearly DP World Tour Championship. Each course has been designed by a professional golfer – Earth and Fire by Greg Norman, Wind by Sergio Garcia, Pete Dye and Greg Norman and Water by Vijay Singh. Earth and Fire are ready with several Spanish style villas. JGE still remains a new community, with two new developments coming up. The clubhouse features a luxurious spa, many restaurants and shops, a golf academy, a tennis academy and a world class fitness centre.
The high-end kitchens have mainly Poggenpohl and Miele products. The finishing of each home varies from development to development - some have marble flooring, others have tile with stone as well as wood. Says Paul Clark, a Dubai based luxury sales specialist, “JGE cities are added to the count every year. The largest systems are in China, in cities such as Hangzhou and Shanghai.
The European cities including Paris (Velib BikeSharingSystem), Copenhagen (ByCyklen Smart Bike System) and the cities of United States suchasWashington, DC (Capital Bikeshare), New York (Citi Bike) etc. are highly successful systems that have helped promote cycling as a viable and valued transport option.
Compared to other transport networks, Cycle Sharing schemes are reasonably low cost and easy to implement, which proves to be the major reason for its boom at an unprecedented rate globally. And it’s an easy win for governments and urban societies, which can boost their green credentials by embracing such an environmentally friendly design.
After imprinting its wheels on major cities of the world, now in recent years the cycle s haring s ystem has c ome t o I ndia. Our metro cities including Delhi (Planet Green Bikes), Ahmedabad (MYBYK), Bangalore ( Atcag), Mumbai ( Cycle Chalao) have already started experimenting with the concept of cycle sharing. Though the success rate of the system in Indian cities is not so high, with the lessons from the experiences of these cities and the success stories of European and American cities, Corporation of Chennai is also now keen to implement the system.
At present in India, the top 20 Smart Cities have already embarked on various sustainable transport initiatives such as the construction of expanded footpaths on all arterial streets, implementation of pedestrian zones to facilitate access to commercial areas and cultural landmarks and IT-based on-street parking management system in their Smart City Mission proposals.
Supplementing all these initiatives, cycle sharing is expected to enhance these efforts by helping the cities achieve their goals has small 3 and 4 bedroom entry level properties as well as 6 or 7 bedroom mansions. The quality within each development is pretty much the same from villa to villa – a view of the golf course view, the general prestige that comes with living in a golf course community, facilities and security.”
Located adjacent t o t he Emirates Road and behind the International Media Production Zone, the average price of a home is AED 7,149,511 or ₹ 13.2 crore.
This private neighbourhood has huge mansion-like villas, and most properties enjoy views over the 18-hole Montgomerie Championship Golf Course as well as wide lakes within the complex. There are grand entrances and high ceilings with French windows opening on sustainable transportation.
Generally, this system is implemented in phases. The identification of the appropriate coverage area for each phase is best carried out by qualified planning bodies through surveying and statistical data analysis. Surveys are also the key to locate ideal cycle station spaces based on the locality, connectivity, intensity of public movement and space availability for the docks.
Based on the survey results, the system size including the number of stations, number of cycles and corresponding number of docks in each station can be determined. The most successful systems have 2-2.5 docks for each cycle.
The cycle station locations are highly dependent on the actual local environment. Stations are mainly located around the core city areas covering all the public and recreation spaces, public transport hubs, malls, cultural landmarks, academic institutions, government offices, market areas etc.
The variety of options for ideal station spaces include wide pavements, space between landscaped areas, areas beneath flyovers and bridges, space adjacent to bus stops, on-street parking spaces etc.
Advertising space on cycles and at stations (provides revenue generation options for system operator/ corporation)
On boosting the last-mile connectivity, cycle sharing thereby expands the catchment areas for the city’s rapid transit systems and will also have direct impact on real estate development.
Also by encouraging a shift to sustainable modes the dependency on automobiles will be highly reduced. Bicycling is often faster than driving in urban areas, and one can cover a lot more territory than he/she can by walking. to great views of the golf course from all rooms. Virtually all villas in Emirates Hills have travertine marble floors. The homes are expensive at AED 26,750,358 or ₹ 50 crore.
Says Ian Kirkby, Dubai based consultant, “Clients are now looking for more European finish and style with open plan living and high end fit outs with kitchens by PoggenPohl and SieMatic and appliances by Miele and Gaggeneau. Potential buyers are the high net worth Indians, locals and still some prominent Europeans.”
This is a premium golf gated community, said to be ideal for a ‘desert lifestyle’ with over 1,650 acres. It has about 4,000 villas. The homes offer generous living spaces and balconies, courtyards or terraces. Vast expanses have been created with bicycle ₹
1 Victory Heights, a joint venture between the overall master developer of Dubai Sports City and Arcapita (a Bahrain-based investment bank), covers 25 million sq ft, and features 961 luxury villas and townhouses, set around Els Club, designed by the South African golfing legend, Ernie Els and managed by Troon Golf. This can be considered the first major golf-course villa community in Dubai.
The villas come in European Classical, Spanish Andalusian, and Mediterranean architectural styles, with custom finishes. This development, which encourages family living and offers ample space to residents has its own recreational facilities. Average price is around AED 4,153,216 or ₹ 7.6 crore.
Just right for a tee break: As Dubai gets firmly entrenched in the big league golfing circuit, developers are focusing on golf lifestyles with
1. Victory Heights
2. Jumeirah Golf Estates
3. Arabian Ranches and
4. Emirates Hills