Houses tower over crops, ET RealEstate

June 24, 2023

VISAKHAPATNAM : Three-storied structures dotting Mallisa, a remote village in Andhra Pradesh, was an eyesore for Raju, an expat who returned home after a decade. It was no longer a trip down memory lane through a lush green sweep. Sporadic modernization was more of an aberration than a sign of prosperity for the techie.

Pydipala China Babu, a farmer from Raju’s neighbourhood, was living happily in his ancestral house, till owning a multi-storied house became a norm four years ago. A year’s strenuous work and about ₹1 crore was spent to build a three-storied structure on 300 sq yards at the village entrance.

A rooftop view from Babu’s home gives a panoramic view of mushrooming concrete. Majority of tiled-roofed houses have now given way to modern housing in this rain-fed village that has a population of 2,000.

STOI visited various villages in a 500km span, starting from Visakhapantam to West Godavari district. A similar metamorphosis was noticed in Narendrapuram (a small village near Rajahmundry), Velugubanda in East Godavari district, Chidipi in West Godavari district, Bendapudi abutting national highway near templetown Annavaram, Ajanagiri village in Visakhapatnam district, Rajapudi in Kakinada district, to name a few.

Experts describe the current trend as the third-generation housing revolution from thatched huts to tiled-roof houses to concrete buildings in a 10-year span. With modern housing becoming the new benchmark of social and financial affluence, many farmers are selling off a part of their land to build new houses. Those, who cannot afford are opting for extensive refurbishments.

“The village dwelling plan was once about optimum utilisation of the housing plot, for granaries, animal barns, storage for tools, provision for practising traditional occupations. But urbanisation and migration of younger generations to cities has paved the way for modern structures,” said Prof M Chandrasekhar, director, Indian Institute of Management, Visakhapatnam.

The adoption of modern housing has also had a ripple effect on other sectors. For instance, Jaggampeta in Kakinada district was once home to 30 factories producing lakhs of roof tiles a day. Several factories in the major panchayat, which enjoyed a reputation for quality roofing tiles till early 2000s, have shut down.

And building material shops like cement, steel, paints, have begun doing brisk business. The demand for skilled masons too has skyrocketed. “The village elite are also availing services of engineers now,” said Bonda Raju, a civil engineer.

Procuring clay pan tiles or wooden rafters and porchesthat adorn the traditional kutcha houses — Manduva Logili — has become tough. “For the majority, there is little choice, but to go for a new house instead of languishing in crumbling structures,” said K Pydiraju, from Turangi village.

The steep rise in agricultural land prices (20-fold in two decades) has created a new elite class among farmers. “While earlier a temple, a public space or a panchayat office served as the central point around which villages developed, now villages are growing both vertically and horizontally as economic conditions improve in rural areas,” said Dr M Prasada Rao, former rector and economics professor, Andhra University.

  • Published On Jun 19, 2023 at 05:00 PM IST

Join the community of 2M+ industry professionals

Subscribe to our newsletter to get latest insights & analysis.

Download ETRealty App

  • Get Realtime updates
  • Save your favourite articles

Scan to download App

Source link

Abhay Singh

Web Developer

Leave a Comment