At present there are three SPAs in the country at New Delhi, Bhopal and Vijayawada. These SPAs are a group of autonomous public institutes of higher education under Ministry of Human Resource Development. The SPAs primarily offer undergraduate, postgraduate, doctoral and executive education programmes.
The first School of Planning and Architecture was founded in 1941 as a Department of Architecture of Delhi College of Engineering now the Delhi Technological University. It was later affiliated to the University of Delhi and integrated with the School of Town and Country Planning which was established in 1955 by the Government of India to provide facilities for rural, urban and regional planning. On integration, the School was renamed as School of Planning and Architecture in 1959. Recognizing its national and international eminence, the Government of India conferred the status of the ‘Deemed University’ on the School in 1979. This entitled the SPA, New Delhi to broaden and deepen its academic horizons by introducing new academic programmes, and by promoting critical research activities. Later on two more SPAs were set up at Bhopal and Vijayawada.
The Finance Minister has also announced setting up of 18 new SPAs in the IITs and NITs as autonomous Schools. Again the selection will be made on challenge mode.