Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Rs 3,000 CR GHOSTPROJECT

Rs 3,000 CR GHOSTPROJECT
An RTI filed by Bangalore Mirror revealed that the much-touted Rs 3,000 crore North-South-East elevated corridor, meant to considerably ease the city’s traffic problems, doesn’t even have a detailed project report
ATUL CHATURVEDI


Transport Minister R Ashok and Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Commissioner Bharat Lal Meena have been repeatedly talking about a Rs 3,000 crore North-South-East Corridor (NSE) that doesn’t even exist on paper. The project got
Bangaloreans excited as it was supposed to significantly reduce their daily traffic woes. The duo had in fact claimed that a detailed project report (DPR) has been readied and work would kickstart shortly.
But the reality is different: No project report pertaining to the NSE Corridor has been prepared. Bangalore Mirror found this out by filing an application under the Right To Information (RTI) Act seeking a copy of the DPR.
At one point prior to our filing the RTI, the government had categorically stated that the DPR for the NSE project has been prepared under the Swiss Challenge method and was awaiting clearance from the Agenda for Bangalore Infrastructure Development (ABIDe). When asked about the exact status of the DPR pertaining to the NSE project, BBMP Chief Engineer (major roads) Chikkarayappa said: “We haven’t prepared any DPR for the NSE corridor under Swiss Challenge. It was just a soft-drafted DPR and it has been rejected on technical grounds. Now we will be calling for a new proposal.” ELEVATED VIADUCT
Sources in BBMP maintained that the NSE Corridor was mooted as part of the Rs 22,000 crore Capital Investment Plan (2009-12) titled ‘Bangalore-Our Goal and Vision’, conceived ahead of the BBMP polls. The plan, which has several other mega infrastructure projects in its bouquet, will be executed under the public-private partnership (PPP) model with financial contributions from the Bangalore Development Authority and Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM).
The NSE Corridor project envisaged a elevated viaduct linking the northern and southern parts of the city with the eastern side. While the North-South Corridor measured a distance of 16 kms (from Central Silk Board to Hebbal via Vellara Junction and Minsk Square), the Eastern connector is 12 kms (from Vellara Junction to Kundalahalli Junction via HAL Airport and Marathalli). The three elevated corridors were meant to strengthen arterial and sub-arterial roads.
Well, going by the way the government announced the NSE corridor project without having done any groundwork, the project is likely to remain a non-starter.
NSE PROJECT
Elevated North-South corridor, cost Rs 1,800 crore
Elevated eastern connectivity corridor from Vellara Junction to Kundalahalli, cost Rs 1,200 cr
Deadline to complete the project, 2012
Now, project has been scrapped

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