Staff Reporter

KOCHI: A core committee formed to look into the hurdles in the progress of the proposed SmartCity Kochi project has drafted a set of proposals.

These proposals would now be forwarded to the State government and the director board of SmartCity Kochi for consideration, District Collector M. Beena, chairperson of the committee, said.

The committee was asked to recommend solutions regarding the relocation of a Public Works Department (PWD) road going through the middle of 100 acres of the project area and that of the installations of the electricity department.

The committee approved the estimate of Rs. 2 crore placed before it by the PWD for the relocation of the road, the Collector said. Considering the procedural delay if it was to be done by the PWD, the committee suggested SmartCity do it on its own, she said.Since the company was a direct beneficiary of the road, it had an equal interest in the quality of the relocated road. The proposal would be adopted subjected to the approval of the director board of SmartCity Kochi.

Regarding the relocation and the reconstruction of the installations and structures of the electricity department, the recommendations evolved at the meeting would assume clarity only after the modalities were worked out.

SmartCity Kochi agreed to share the cost of reconstructing the dormitory complex and relocating the air quality monitoring station of the electricity department. However, the percentage of cost sharing between the stakeholders is yet to be decided, she said.

The committee recommended that the company reconstruct the dormitory on its own to avert any procedural delay. SmartCity Kochi refused to bear any cost on the relocation of the sedimentation tank and pump house, citing a legal advice it had received on the matter.

Dr. Beena said the committee would recommend exploring the possibility of relocating these facilities at the expense of the government. As per the estimate this would cost Rs. 42 lakh. She said it was highly “unlikely” that the electricity department would bear the cost since its position from the very beginning was that it should not be overburdened.

The Collector said there would be ample time to relocate the facilities, as the construction in the area where they were being positioned would be taken up only at the fag end.

While SmartCity disagreed over the estimate of Rs. 1.04 crore for the reconstruction of the dormitory complex, it accepted the estimate of Rs. 3.40 lakh for the relocation of the air quality monitoring station.

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