Shettar lays foundation stone for eight-lane corridor
In the not-too-distant future, hassled commuters, fed up with the insane traffic, in the city’s centre can drive with a little less stress. Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar on Thursday laid the foundation stone for the eight-lane, signal-free corridor at Okalipuram. The corridor will have loops, underpass and road underbridges between Okalipuram Junction and Fountain Circle.
The estimated project cost is around Rs. 115 crore, excluding land acquisition costs. The total cost of the project, being taken up by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike, is around Rs. 183.77 crore, including expenditure for shifting of utilities. The BBMP has spent around Rs. 58.8 crore to acquire 3.1 acres of land from Binny Mill, which has been handed over to the South Western Railway.
Decongesting the west
The project is expected to decongest western areas such as Rajajinagar, Basaveshwaranagar, Vijayanagar and Nagarabhavi. The existing nine-metre carriageway at Okalipuram-Platform Road Junction and Fountain Circle witnesses nearly 14,000 PCUs (passenger car units per hour) during peak hours and over 8,000 during non-peak hours. This was resulting in frequent traffic snarls, congestion at intersections and increase in commute time. The BBMP has proposed to complete the construction of the corridor in 18 to 20 months.
After laying the foundation stone, Mr. Shettar said this part of the city sees lots of traffic since the main travel points — Kempegowda Bus Station and the City Railway Station — are located here. Several departments such as the Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom), the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL), the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) and the South Western Railway (SWR) had coordinated and ironed out the bottlenecks. He directed the BBMP to ensure that the contractor — Simplex Infrastructure — completes the work on schedule and reduces the public’s inconvenience.
Claiming that over the past four years, the BJP government had earmarked around Rs.15,000 crore for infrastructure development in the city, he said Bangalore, a city of international repute, deserved better civic amenities. Later, he gave away cheques to officials of Bescom, BSNL and BWSSB for shifting of utilities.
Urban Development Minister S. Suresh Kumar said the BBMP would give Rs. 7.30 crore for construction of railway quarters and Rs. 2 crore for the running room.