Friday, June 24, 2005

Town Hall subway project castle in air

Town Hall subway project castle in air
New Indian Express

BANGALORE: Subways in the city are more useful for hawkers in the day and lumpen elements at night and least for the pedestrian. The subway in Majestic has become a commercial complex for hawkers and pedestrians have tough time wading through the pestering sellers.

Even technical opinion is that people prefer flyovers to subways owing to fear of getting into a dark enclosed passage. However, Bangalore City Corporation (BCC) is all set to invest over Rs. 2 crore in one such project near Town Hall. The reason given is that a flyover will obstruct the aesthetics of heritage buildings like Town Hall and BCC office.

Interestingly, the civic body has delayed the project for over two years escalating its cost. The BCC has been delaying commissioning of subway construction next door to it, near Town Hall. Despite the civic body shortlisting the contractor in late 2003, the project is yet to see the light of day.

BCC again made budgetary allocation of Rs. 2.5 crore in this year’s budget for the subway to mitigate the woes of pedestrians struggling to cross the junction. The subway will connect pedestrian traffic between JC Road, NR Road and SJP Road.

Sources said that re-tendering for the work has been completed. Out of the two bidders shortlisted, Parichita Constructions has been selected though the bid was 27.22 per cent higher than the BCC estimate of Rs 1.96 crore. The premium tender was revised and has been finalised at Rs 2.37 crore.

The proposal has been sent to the standing committee on works which has approved it, sources said.

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