Sharjah24: Sharjah Consultative Council (SCC) members discussed all policies of the Sharjah Department of Town Planning and Survey (SDTPS) and presented their opinions that were integrated with the Department's efforts to develop and manage urban growth based on development indicators and community participation to reach a prosperous emirate that achieves community happiness and improves the quality of life.
During the session, SCC's members discussed the future of urban planning for the city of Sharjah and for all its cities and regions , calling for the importance of allowing the allocation of residential land for the people of the emirate in the city of Sharjah as long as their living conditions call for residing there.
The session was chaired by His Excellency Ali Mehd Al Suwaidi, Chairman of the Council, and the session began with the ratification of the minutes of the previous session, after which the Council discussed the policy of SDTPS, in the presence of His Excellency Eng. Khalid bin Butti Al Muhairi, Member of the Executive Council of the Emirate of Sharjah, Head of SDTPS, and His Excellency Walid Ali bin Falah Al Mansouri, Chairman of the Committee Permanent allotment of land; Eng. Hamad Juma’a Al Shamsi, Director of Customer Relations and Follow-up Department; Eng. Ahmed Saif bin Nahila Al Ketbi, Director of the Transaction Center Department; Eng. Abdullah Saeed Makhlouf Al Naqbi, Branch Manager, Central Region; Eng. Ayman Rashid Al Naqbi, Khorfakkan Branch Manager, and Engineer Nelly Muhammad Al Shamsi, Director of Support Services Department.
The Secretary-General of the Council, Ahmed Saeed Al-Jarwan, read the general topic of discussion and the names of the applicants, saying: To complement the functions undertaken by SDTPS based on meeting the needs of development, service and community projects, and working with the relevant departments, to promote the development process, adopt appropriate procedures and respond to the needs of the emirate’s cities and regions, Infrastructure, land and services in order to enhance the social and economic development witnessed by all the cities and regions of the emirate, and due to the importance of the roles of the department and the tasks and competencies it is concerned with, the applicants would like to discuss the policies of the department in order to achieve the goals of the public interest.
His Excellency Eng. Khalid bin Butti Al Muhairi, Head of SDTPS, delivered a speech reviewing the department’s efforts in the areas of continuous development and improvement and meeting the needs of the Emirate of Sharjah with plans based on the Department’s vision of sustainable urban planning and competitive services in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah to achieve a comprehensive renaissance in the cities and regions of the Emirate of Sharjah, extending his deep thanks to the SCC for inviting the department to discuss its efforts and roles in keeping pace with urban expansion.
In his speech, Al Muhairi affirmed that the department believes in the importance of developing a system of partnerships, cooperation and coordination between service departments as it completed the first phase of the unified building permits platform, whereby a building permit can be obtained for residential units within six working days, as well as linking with the Real Estate Registration Department to issue maps and the aerial photography project for the emirate in cooperation with the Department of Statistics and Community Development, and other fruitful partnerships with housing authorities, municipalities and the rest of the service departments.
After that, Sixteen members asked questions and inquiries that lead to the department's policies, and stressed the community's need to develop initiatives related to planning roads, transport and service facilities.
His Excellency Obaid Awad Al Tunaiji, reviewing a number of proposals to enable citizens to invest in commercial lands and work to speed up approvals for construction, in addition to his proposal to increase the areas of land for commercial and industrial grants to benefit from them.
His Excellency Obaid Mohammed Al-Qidd called on giving priority in the allocation of residential lands to those who have approvals from housing programs and financial liquidity for their ability to start immediate construction.
In his intervention, His Excellency Ahmed Rashid Al-Naqbi stressed the importance of having integrated and comprehensive plans for the transfer and disposal of torrents, dams flows and heavy rain water from homes.
Abdullah Khasoni Al Ketbi asked about the number of services that the department has offered in the Sharjah digital application and about the services that it intends to add in the future.
His Excellency Ali Saif Al Nadas asked about the aspects of the department’s communication with the concerned authorities, such as the Department of Statistics and Community Development, the Roads and Transport Authority, the municipalities of the Emirate of Sharjah and the Department of Public Works, with the aim of participating and integrating in infrastructure work.
His Excellency Dr. Humaid Al Suwaiji Al Zaabi called for the development of a new mechanism that would allow some growing families and small residential spaces to install umbrellas for their vehicles outside the wall of the house in the city of Sharjah.
His Excellency Sharifa Musa Al Mazmi called for the necessity of having a clear mechanism at the Department and the Land Allocation Committee regarding residential, agricultural, commercial and industrial lands, and expediting the handling of citizens’ accumulated requests for years.
His Excellency Dr. Muhammad Al-Kaws inquired about the department’s policies in carrying out its transactions based on artificial intelligence systems and applications used in the urban observatory project.
His Excellency Mohammed Abdullah Al Raisi called for the allocation of residential lands to the citizens of Khorfakkan in the city of Sharjah in case of working in Sharjah or its neighboring cities, and to increase the area of residential lands allocated to citizens, which is not commensurate with the size of family members.
Her Excellency Sheikha Ibrahim Juwaid asked about the non-disbursement of residential land to young people until they reached the age of 25 and the reason for the department’s delay in responding to inquiries submitted by government departments and agencies regarding citizens’ affairs.
His Excellency Muhammad Ali Al-Naqbi dedicated his intervention to the demand to complete the infrastructure and services in the Al-Kharous area to encourage the people to move quickly and live there.
His Excellency Eng. Khalid bin Butti Al Muhairi and his assistants gave a full explanation to the members about the department’s competencies, roles and communication with the concerned authorities to continue urban planning for the Emirate of Sharjah, especially during the work and projects it accomplished.
Eng. Khalid bin Butti Al Muhairi, Head of the Planning and Survey Department, gave an explanation of the questions submitted by the council members by saying: To serve the tasks entrusted to the department, at the level of individuals, work teams and strategic partners. The general vision of this strategic system is “sustainable urban planning and competitive services.” as he said: Today, the department is implementing the third phase of this system (2022-2024) including six strategic axes:
The first axis: The management of land planning, housing, urban renewal and heritage.
The second axis: Ensuring the comprehensive planning of the transportation networks, communications and service facilities.
The third axis: Strengthening the data management system and geographical and spatial information.
Fourth Axis: Continuous improvement of customer experience and provision of services across all channels.
The fifth axis: Improving the system of partnerships and cooperation, and ensuring coordination between service departments.
The sixth axis: Strengthening the institutional capabilities that support performance.
Al Muhairi continued, " We have completed the project of the housing plan for the citizens of the emirate for the year 2042, where the total demand for the number of residential lands required until the target year was estimated at 47,665 residential plots, which will be met through several programs, including:
Creating new residential areas.
Replacement and renewal of old areas.
Suggesting new building patterns.
Al Muhairi affirmed that the housing plan was divided into five-year work programs, and in coordination with the municipal councils and the rest of the service departments, the annual demand for the current five-year plan is estimated at 1,906 requests each year. 1,715 residential plots have been allocated since 2020, including 4,400 plots within housing complexes. The number of lands allocated during the past ten years reached 26,300 residential plots.
This is followed by another no less important project, which is the Community Services 2040 Project, which aims to include the needs of urban areas from the range of community services based on two main factors:
First: Population density.
Second: The spatial distance between sites.
Al Muhairi added: "The department is also working on developing a comprehensive plan for transportation and communication networks, within four major projects.
The first project: The comprehensive plan for public transport in the city of Sharjah 2040, which aims to enhance the role of transportation in the city and increase the rates of use by members of the community to address the problems of traffic congestion.
The second project: Traffic simulation for the city of Sharjah.
The third project: a comprehensive study of parking in the city of Sharjah, which included 24 areas within the commercial heart of the city, where the current situation was evaluated and future demand was determined, with the proposal of various alternatives to provide parking.
The fourth project: Raising the efficiency of transit traffic in the emirate, including the 55-kilometre Etihad train project within the emirate of Sharjah to the emirate of Fujairah with the aim of transporting goods and passengers and will be launched at the end of 2023.
In his response, Al Muhairi stressed that the department attaches the utmost importance to continuous improvement in customer service, and it is one of the most important principles of our work in the department, as the department manages 7 service centers.
The e-services system has been developed to include 82 services provided through the department’s website, digital Sharjah, and the smart assistant service (WhatsApp). The department relies on more than one mechanism to communicate with the public, and he indicated that the department provided many initiatives that contributed to the development and construction of new services for customers in proportion to the needs and requirements. The extended housing plan was completed, where the lands were allocated to the beneficiaries, as well as an estimate of future needs.
At the end, The session The Secretary-General of the Council, His Excellency Ahmed Saeed Al-Jarwan, announced that the next session will be held on Thursday, March 31, 2022, and its topic will be a parliamentary question submitted by His Excellency Member Jassim Juma Al Mazmi to the Environment and Nature Reserves Authority in the Emirate of Sharjah to maintain air quality and reduce harmful emissions from industrial facilities.
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