Mangaluru

New Urwa Market building remains unoccupied

More than two years after being inaugurated, the multi-storeyed market-cum-commercial complex or new Urwa Market constructed by Mangaluru Urban Development Authority (MUDA) here remains unoccupied.

The then Urban Development Minister U.T. Khader inaugurated the complex in January 2019. It is under lock since then. The foundation stone for the building was laid on December 19, 2016.

Mangaluru City Corporation has leased out for 30 years its land where the new market building has been built for the Urban Development Authority. Neither the MUDA nor the city corporation earned revenue from it for the last two financial years.

The building has a built-up area of 84,891.45 sq ft. The MUDA had invested ₹12.63 crore on the project by availing itself of ₹4.30 crore as bank loan. It spent ₹8.33 crore from its fund.

The six-storeyed building has provision for 122 stalls. Of these, at the time of inauguration, 31 were reserved for fish vendors, eight for selling chicken and 68 for other purposes. There are 15 units which can be used as offices.

An official said that 69 cars and 40 two-wheelers could be parked in the basement and lower ground floors. Basement parking has been designed for parking vehicles of owners of offices.

MUDA Commissioner G.T. Dinesh Kumar told The Hindu that the authority had floated bids twice inviting those interested to avail themselves of stalls/office space in the building on rental basis. But the response was poor probably due to high rentals. The authority will have to fix rentals as per government norms. The MUDA has now worked out revised rentals to attract offices/customers and the bids will be invited on this basis for the third time by this month-end. It has also been planned to rent out office space for select government departments which are now functioning on rental basis in private buildings in the city.

Asked whether the MUDA or the city corporation will manage the market, he said that for the time being, MUDA will manage it and the authority will ensure that the market building will no longer remains unoccupied.

Mangaluru City South MLA D. Vedavyasa Kamath said that if the city corporation will have to manage the market, it will have to pay the fund invested by the MUDA. At present, the city corporation is facing a funds crunch. Other funds cannot be diverted to make payment to the MUDA. A solution will be worked out within a month, he said.

MUDA Chairman Ravishankar Mijar said that steps are being taken to make the market functional.

Meanwhile, Mr. Khader said that he felt that the city corporation will have to manage the market and not MUDA as many issues, including issuing licence, which will come up while managing a market will be related to the city corporation. Returning the investment to MUDA should not become a problem for the city corporation, he said.

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Printable version | May 14, 2021 3:58:57 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Mangalore/new-urwa-market-building-remains-unoccupied/article34305550.ece

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