Thursday, December 10, 2009

Ashok does a U-turn on road-widening projects

Ashok does a U-turn on road-widening projects

Staff Reporter
Works to continue, BBMP has not heard from the Minister
Bangalore: In an apparent volte face, Transport Minister R. Ashok said road-widening projects already taken up would not be suspended.

On Tuesday, he told presspersons here the State Government had directed the Bruhat Banagalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to suspend all road-widening projects in the city. However, on Wednesday, he told The Hindu that work on only one road — J.P. Nagar Main Road to Nayandahalli — would be suspended for the time being. “We are in the process of reviewing the project details. Residents of the area had objected to the project as a flyover and an underpass are also being built,” he said. The BBMP has taken up work on 72 major roads, including Tannery Road, Mallathahalli Road and Mysore Road, all in various stages of completion.

Mr. Ashok, who is the Bangalore South in-charge Minister, denied that Tuesday’s announcement was made keeping in mind the forthcoming election to the BBMP Council. Although the road-widening project was cleared five years ago, the BBMP began work only recently. Mr. Ashok had claimed that much had changed since and to reduce congestion in the Central Business District (CBD), a proposal to make 12 arterial roads signal-free in the CBD had been approved.

When contacted, BBMP officials said they had not received any communication as on Wednesday with regard to suspension of the road-widening work. The Minister’s clarification indicates that the road-widening work is expected to continue as per the schedule.

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