The pandemic has presented a host of changes, and one of the most prominent outcomes is the work from home culture. This has brought about a surge in reverse migration, taking most of the young professionals closer to their hometowns as they relocated from metro cities. On the other hand, even permanent loyalists of our urban cities choose to relocate to tier-2 and tier-3 cities to get away from the chaos of metro cities. While the demand for better infrastructure in the smaller pockets of the nation has been in the works for a while now, factors contributed by the pandemic have been a major catalyst in the plans of development.
According to a Consumer Sentiment Survey, realty investors have been moving to tier-2 & 3 cities, with 26 percent of property investors viewing Ahmedabad, Kochi, Chandigarh, Jaipur, and Nashik as hot destinations. Apart from affordable property prices, companies also believe growth prospects are better in such regions, unlike saturated metros. Significantly, other official initiatives such as AMRUT (Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation) and the Smart Cities Mission also support the growth of small cities.
The Smart Cities’ mission that began with 100 Smart Cities has presently grown to 105. Along with the ‘Housing for All by 2022’ programme, the Smart Cities’ mission has come as a turning point of sorts for real estate developers. Both these central programmes have shifted the focus to smaller cities. Unlike tier-1 cities, implementation in non-metros is moving much faster. The rapid growth in urbanization is occurring for varied reasons that are not limited to these initiatives and reverse migration. The emergence of many industries, including sunrise sectors and startups, has witnessed the ascent of non-metro areas where large land parcels are available at affordable rates. Even IT companies have set-up bases in places such as Hyderabad, Pune, Gurgaon, and Ahmedabad, among others. This has posed the need for holistic development of the nation, which is not majorly concentrated on the metro cities.
The prompt development of the smaller markets has also facilitated construction enablers to expand their horizons and embrace materials and concepts that were categorically urban until recently. For instance, the need for quicker
Turnaround Time (TAT) is pushing the construction sector to consider materials that are easier to use and faster to implement. In addition, recently during the Prime Minister’s ongoing radio show, 'Mann ki Baat', he encouraged the incorporation of unique construction methods to build a better future for the nation.
Today, the awareness amongst markets, along with the accessibility offered, it is possible to bring modern technology and architecture to life in the smaller geographies of the country. This is also helping experiment and bring to life the vision of a well-developed nation. Having said
At the back of this, one material that is growing in relevance is gypsum boards, also popularly known as plasterboards. These are widely used to enhance the interiors in residential and commercial buildings, as they are fire-resistant, cost-efficient, and can be used not only for the construction of regular walls and ceilings, but also as room partitions. However, their relevance now also stands in building better infrastructure for the deeper pockets of the nation to achieve the goal of holistic development of our nation.
The rapid pace at which smaller cities are growing also paves way for solutions that offer faster TAT on infrastructure and construction in these cities. In such a case, faster and hassle-free alternatives like drywalls become an effective choice for the sector in catering to the needs of the customers. A recent example of the efficiency of this material is the Covid-19 centre with a capacity of 600 beds in Surat constructed by Saint Gobain within 17 days. The use of Drywalls made it possible to construct the centre in comparatively lesser time than traditional masonry.
that, there is also growing cognizance about materials that are safer and more efficient than what is traditionally used. While diving into newer projects, construction enablers are looking at alternatives that offer minimum damage to the environment and are at the same time safe for habitation, like drywall partitions and ceilings that provide fire protection and resistance.
Along with the aesthetic consciousness, there is also active awareness about the environment, enabling consumers to choose suitable products and materials. Drywalls as a solution in this context also saves 99 percent more water than masonry construction. At the same time, they also contribute towards LEED, IGBC, and GRIHA rating points, and consist of recycled content. These factors make it an obvious choice in sustainable construction.
Today, the awareness amongst markets, along with the accessibility offered, it is possible to bring modern technology and architecture to life in the smaller geographies of the country
Sudeep Kolte, Vice President - Sales & Marketing, Saint-Gobain India, Gyproc
It is evident that the array of advantages offered by drywalls and other unique construction technology are now no longer restricted to urban construction, but have expanded their reach to the developing regions of the country. This has also made them a popular choice, bringing together modern and sustainable designs. With the growth that the non-metro markets are demonstrating, the potential for sustainable solutions that engineer infrastructure for today and the long run will only send an upward trend, paving the way for nation-wide development in the country.