The city Corporation has started work on constructing a community hall-cum-shopping complex on 22 cents of land which housed the old market at Kuravankonam.

On Tuesday, the authorities started demolishing the old buildings to pave way for construction.

Mayor K. Chandrika and a team of officials inspected site and supervised the work on Tuesday. The construction of the building would cost around Rs.1.75 crore and it would be completed by end of next year, sources said.

The dilapidated women and child centre, the remaining portion of the old market, and the toilet block constructed using the MLA’s local area development fund (of then MLA K. Mohankumar), will be demolished. The Corporation’s existing shopping complex on the premises would be retained and merged with the new facility.

The ground and first floors would have space to accommodate 15 shops each, besides space for office. The community hall to accommodate around 1,000 people would be in the second floor.

The project, a long-pending demand of the people of Kuravankonam, Nanthancode, and Kowdiar areas, would be implemented with the help of the Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project (KSUDP), ward councillor and chairman of the Corporation standing committee on Tax Appeal P. Shyam Kumar told The Hindu.

The civic body had sought around Rs.75 lakh from KSUDP and the rest of the requirement would be met using Plan funds, he added.

The project aimed at providing a facility where the local community could gather for various events and hold civic and family functions, he added.

The rent for the community halls would be between Rs.10,000 and Rs.12,000. The mandatory meetings of the ward could be held here once the facility came up, he added.

Corporation standing committee on Works chairman V.S. Padmakumar said the community halls, besides helping the common man host functions at affordable rates, would help the civic body shore up its revenue. At present, there were 6 such halls under its control and each fetched Rs.2 lakh to Rs.6 lakh annually, he added.

Work on constructing a community hall at Muttathara was on, he said.