“Podium” car park to minimize the risk of flooding


Flooding last year may not have resulted in a drastic change in the ground-level storm drainage system, but it has caused builders to think about alternatives to basement parking. The norm for residential and commercial buildings is to go deep, dig one, two, three or more basements for parking.

The cellars also served as electricity, internet, telephone and other points, and the massive flooding of several areas resulted in major disruptions in addition to vehicle breakdowns. Pumping water caused more chaos as sewer lines reached capacity and overflowed with complaints galore to city officials.

The Confederation of Real Estate Developers of India-Hyderabad (CREDAI-Hyd) chapter scoured the National Building Code (NBC) and parking standards in cities like Mumbai to come up with a proposal for ‘podium’ floors, which is a “horizontal projection (platform) extending beyond the footprint of the building on one or more sides, and may have one or more levels”.

Simply put, it’s about taking the parking floors above ground instead of below. “The National Building Code (CNB) has podium parking, however, this has never been tried here. We studied various models, spoke to eminent architects and presented it to the government because unless it is clearly stated in the building regulations, permits cannot be granted, ”explained President Fr. Rama Krishna. Rao, in an exclusive interaction.

The government appointed a committee made up of representatives from the municipal administration department, the fire department, architects and a real estate association to study the proposal. And, based on their report, new orders were issued by Principal Secretary Arvind Kumar recently allowing parking on the podium.

It will be limited to 15 meters or five floors depending on the width of the approach road. If the site is more than 10 acres, more podiums will be allowed and the height of the building will be exempt from those parking floors similar to stilted parking lots. Setbacks of seven meters for turns of 55 meters with a turning radius of 12 meters and nine meters for turns of 55 meters and more with a turning radius of 14 meters were mandatory.

Basements will be limited to three for commercial and two for residential. Backhands will be treated identically for laps and podiums.

For buildings with more than 10,000 m² of floor space, firefighters will have access to half of the perimeter of the building and if it is less than 10,000 m², to 1/3 of the perimeter.

Between 2 and 10% of the podium space may be used only for driver equipment, visitor halls and washrooms.

“Deep basement excavation is an expensive proposition due to the bedrock as well as the transportation and disposal of debris in addition to being unfriendly. Artificial lighting and ventilation must be provided there at considerable cost. Podium parking with natural ventilation offers a solution for multi-storey buildings. But it’s optional for developers because they can also choose existing regulations, ”Rao said.

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