Tech parks tremble fearing metro’s rumble

Property owners fear large-scale migration of firms from prime IT hub

One of the prime information technology hubs in the city could be hit by Namma Metro Phase 2 alignment.

Portions or entire properties of several software parks in the Export Promotion Industrial Park (EPIP), near Mahadevapura, which falls in the proposed alignment of east-west extension line connecting Byappanahalli and Whitefield, face demolition apart from a couple of big hotels.

This is because the line passes through the EPIP area to reach ITPB (International Tech Park Bangalore) and Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (BMRCL) deems it viable for its huge catchment (commuters).

“This line is not only a longer route, having more stations and curves, but would also result in huge acquisition costs for BMRCL,” a owner of a software park, who is set to lose a part of his property to the project, told The Hindu. “The proposed alignment is unnecessary as the line could have gone directly from Hoody to the ITPB.”

Huge losses

When the EPIP was formed, the Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB) allotted land for several software parks here. “After having paid taxes for years and adhering to all building bylaws, we are being victimised now,” he said. “The moment companies [who have their offices here] fear for security of their facilities, they will pull out of our premises, resulting in huge losses for us. Then where will BMRCL get commuters?”

He went on say that the minimum distance between the buildings and the metro rail track would shrink drastically, which the companies would consider a security threat. “They may not occupy the facility even after the track completion, rendering our buildings useless. We will also lose out on rent if companies decide to vacate during the construction that may take years.”

Acquisition costs

It is not only commercial setups that want the line to go straight from Hoody to ITPB; Mahadevapura residents had also petitioned the BMRCL with the same request, but were turned off, citing high acquisition costs. “Even here, acquisition costs would be very high given the property size and scale. Most tech parks are multi-storied and have multi-towers,” the software park owner added. He said a BMTC feeder service could cater to the area.

The ITPB and EPIP, which house a large number of tech companies employing tens of thousands employees, are part of the larger Whitefield IT area that most software companies aspire to have an office at, a leading real estate businessman said. “Whitefield and Gurgaon in Delhi are two must addresses that companies want.”

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 9:21:04 AM |

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