A home snugly nestled amidst picturesque environs, overlooking thousands of undulating acres of lush green landscape, a golf course, a cricket stadium, a polo ground, a racing track and a collection of lakes for added measure. Such developments are coming up close to the Capital and elsewhere and could be yours in the next 5-10 years.
With the Commonwealth Games 2010 around the corner and most retail models having been exhausted by realty firms, several developers are exploring opportunities within the sports arena and creating spaces marketed as sports cities. These, say realty experts, are an extension of concept townships such as golf course cities or hill cities that give a project its character and enable it to command a premium. The theme also helps create excitement around the residential product and acts as an anchor to pull prospective home buyers. Besides sports, cities can also be built around themes like healthcare, research and education and become destinations in themselves.
Sports cities incorporate state-of-the art sporting ventures and academies with residential and commercial developments. The basic requirement for a sports city is a 100-acre tract of land that includes sporting venues, training academies, schools, homes, commercial and retail.The work area, too, is close at hand. The integrated nature of these developments helps them sustain themselves in real estate terms.
These are associated with organised sporting activity besides having the gardens, parks and golf courses. These can be built in zones with low FSI consolidated with tall towers, villas and large open spaces. Such cities can also be planned in areas around an existing golf course or a sports facility that functions as a sports city.
“Even the Commonwealth Games Village, which is centered around sports facilities, will be a working sports city for two weeks. Sports city developments are generally high-end. Golf courses, sports, academies, etc are all valueadds and give an opportunity to the developer to charge a little bit extra than others nearby. It gives them an edge, a different positioning and in the current economic situation, helps developers break out of the traditional revenue earning mould,” he adds.
What started with Sahara’s Aamby Valley project at Lonavla a few years ago and saw offshoots in the form of golf townships has now evolved into a full-fledged sports cities concept.