Chennai

Corpn. seeks World Bank funds for projects

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Civic body asked to include aspects such as climate responsive footpaths in mega street project

Chennai is expected to get climate responsive footpaths along 100 km of roads as part of a road makeover project. The World Bank has suggested to the Chennai Corporation to include such aspects in the mega street project estimated to cost ₹1,400 crore.

The Corporation had requested funding for four projects from the World Bank as part of the city partnership programme.

The proposals are mega street project, on-street parking, optic fibre cable integration and the multimodal integration project at Broadway.

The World Bank has planned to provide $200 million in the first tranche. “The funding is expected by October 2020,” an official said.

It would give a development policy loan, which would focus on funding policy reform in urban mobility for Chennai, instead of funding civic agencies' infrastructure projects.

Sustainable vision

“This is the first time the World Bank is doing a city level partnership for Chennai. It will give the money only if the policies are adopted. Multiple civic projects should have a sustainable vision. The World Bank wants all the civic projects to be aligned to the same vision,” said an official.

Officials said the proposals for unsustainable modes of transport may not receive funding from the World Bank. For example, the bank has indicated that it will not fund the project proposed by the Highways Department in Chennai to develop flyovers at an estimated cost of ₹16,000 crore.

Pointing to sustainable projects such as Metro Rail that reduce the number of cars on the road, the World Bank has said the proposal to build more flyovers would be contradictory.

Proposal rejected

World Bank officials have rejected the Highways Department’s proposals for flyovers as “quite old”, as a number of flyovers constructed in cities across the world were being demolished.

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2019 11:49:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/corpn-seeks-world-bank-funds-for-projects/article30100773.ece

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