Friday, August 28, 2009

Road to DEVELOPMENT, FINALLY

Road to DEVELOPMENT, FINALLY
BBMP Clears UB Group’s Proposal To Develop Vittal Mallya Road | Cost May Run Into A Few Crores
Asha Rai | TNN

Bangalore: Vittal Mallya Road, which had become a high-profile symbol for the poor state of Bangalore roads with its open drains, broken pavements, potholes and uneven surface, will finally get a makeover. Vijay Mallya’s UB Group, which maintains the road, finally got the green signal from the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) for its plan to beautify and rejuvenate the city’s high street in the central business district. BBMP will supervise the work. It has also given design specifications for the road and will charge UB a fee for it.
UB Group sources said the clearance came in late July. Subsequently, UB Group spent a month shortlisting and negotiating with contractors before awarding the work a few days ago. Work has already commenced and expected to be completed in three months.
How the road will look
For starters, the road will be a concrete one with dedicated drainage along the entire length on both sides. A duct will also be laid on both sides to carry power and telecom cables, which means there won’t be any need to dig the road every time new electricity or phone connection have to be given.
The road will also have horizontal hume pipes beneath for crossdrainage. The cost of redoing the road is expected to run into a few crores. The road will boast of street furniture (benches) and bollard lighting (lamps on short posts). Pavements on both sides will have granite paving. A UB Group source familiar with the project said, “The aim is to make this a model road in Bangalore with beautiful landscaping.”
In the past
In mid-May, UB Group along with Prestige Group — the joint-venture partners in UB City — had written to BBMP that they would redo the road, which was an absolute eyesore. It was even more jarring as the road is home to some of the city’s most prominent people and to UB City, which houses global brands such as Louis Vuitton, Tag Heuer, Tiffanys, Ferragamo, among others.
The road was in limbo for the past couple of years with UB’s proposals to redo the road not getting the required approvals, and with BBMP not doing anything.
Name-change angle
Earlier this year, BBMP wrote to UB Group stating that unless the latter fixed the road, BBMP would cancel the name of the road as the original agreement required UB Group to maintain it. This, in lieu for changing the name from Grant Road to Vittal Mallya Road. The name change was effected over 15 years ago.

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