Noida Twin Tower Demolition Case: Supertech Twin Towers (Noida Twin Tower) were brought down on 28th August 2022 – Sunday, with the help of over 3,700 kg of explosives. After 9 years of legal battle waged by the Residents Welfare Association (RWA) against Supertech Builders; the Noida Twin Towers, one of the highest buildings in the country, were brought to the ground in merely 9 seconds. The illegal towers were brought down with the use of Modern Civil Engineering Technology coupled with the implosion technique by a Mumbai-based Company. Know Noida Twin Tower Demolition Case History, Background and Why did SC order their Demolition Here.
Noida Twin Towers Case History
The construction of the Noida Twin Towers began in 2004 after Supertech Ltd was awarded land for it by the Noida Authority Sector 93A. The land was to be used for the development of a housing society, which was named Emerald Court by the Builder. After initial plans were drawn, SuperTech Group submitted building plans for the project with the Noida Authority in compliance with New Okhla Industrial Development Area Building Regulations and Directions 1986. On 20th June, the Noida Authority approved the plan for the development of the housing complex with 14 Buildings with 9storeyswith a maximum height restriction of 37 metres.
Change of Building Plans and Addition of Twin Towers
In June 2006, Supertechwas awarded more land for building under the same terms following which it decided to change the Building Plan. By 2012, the builder had proposed to change the original construction plan drastically with 15 Buildings instead of the earlier 14 and also increased the height to 14 Storey instead of the approved 9. Apart from this, the builder also added two new towers with 40 floors, which was challenged by RWA and became the centre point of the legal battle hence forth.
Legal Challenge and Battle
As per the building plan floated by Supertech during the initial phase, it was supposed to develop a green patch as part of the project and land was earmarked for it near Tower 1. But, after the revision of plans in 2012, the same land was allocated for the construction of the Noida Twin Towers named Ceyane and Apex. Furthermore, the height of these towers was also increased significantly from 24 floors to 40 floors.
After the change in plans in 2012, residents decided to file a case against the builder demanding that Ceyane and Apex- the twin towers be demolished as it was being constructed illegally. Residents also reached out to the Noida Authority seeking cancellation of the approval granted for the same. RWA moved the Allahabad High Court which in April 2014 ordered the demolition of the Noida Twin Towers. As expected, Supertech challenged the verdict in the Supreme Court.
In 2021, the Supreme Court of India ruled in favour of the residents and upheld the High Court verdict ordering the demolition of the illegal twin towers. The apex court, in its final order, stated that the Noida Authority and Supertech had engaged in “nefarious complicity” and ordered the builder to bear the cost of demolition of the buildings.
Noida Twin Tower Demolition
On 28th August 2022 – Sunday, in line with the directions issued by the Supreme Court of India, the Noida Twin Towers were razed to the ground. The demolition was carried out by Edifice Engineering, a Mumbai-based company, using nearly 3700 kg of explosives to bring down two nearly 100-meter buildings. The company employed a technique called implosion, under which explosives are placed inside holes drilled in specific parts of the building structure. The controlled explosion was carried out in the ground-up matter, with explosives placed on the ground floor will go off first. Prior to this, Edifice Engineering had carried out the demolition of four illegal apartments near Kochi in Kerala.
Pre-Demolition Preparation: As part of the pre-demolition preparation, Edifice Engineering placed nearly 3700 kg of explosives by drilling holes in the main structure of the buildings. Nearly 7000 holes were drilled in the building and over 20,000 circuits were set to trigger the demolition. An exclusion zone of roughly 500 metres from the twin towers was created for the demolition.
Evaluation of People: All the residents of the residential complex which surround the twin towers were evacuated and buildings were covered with geo-tactile fabric to limit the damage. As part of the evacuation process, nearly 5000 residents of nearby societies, 200+ pets and over 3000 vehicles were moved out of the blast impact radius.
Electricity, Gas, Road Connectivity Disconnected: Ahead of the blast scheduled at 2:30 PM, electricity and gas lines to the surrounding buildings were cut off to avoid any damage. In addition to this, a27-km stretch of the Noida-Greater Noida expressway was also closed down for nearly 30 to 45 Minutes for the safety of people.
Blast and Demolition: Exactly at 2:30 PM in the afternoon, a controlled explosion was carried out to raze the Noida Supertech Twin Towers. Noida Twin Towers i.e., Apex (32 storeys) and Ceyane (29 storeys) were brought to the ground in about 9 to 12 seconds. The total cost of demolition activity is pegged at Rs 20 crore and it is also placed under a Rs 100 crore insurance policy to also cover damages to adjacent buildingsif any. This is the biggest such exercise in the country so far. The demolition also lead toa peak noise pollution level of101.2 decibels, according to official figures. The demolition executed using the ‘waterfall technique’ has left about 35,000 cubic metres or 55,000 tonnes to 80,000 tonnes of debris at the site.
Dust Cloud and Pollution Concerns: One of the biggest concerns shared by environmentalists ahead of the demolition was the air pollution it would cause. As expected, soon after the demolition, a dust cloud emerged and surrounded the area; with the surrounding buildings being not visible clearly for upto 30 to 60 minutes. Water sprinklers and anti-smog guns were installed near the demolition site to control the air pollution level. No major change in Air Qualify Index – AQI level was reported post the blast.