Friday, July 30, 2004

Jerome's saga

The Hindu recounts Jayakar Jerome's legacy

The BDA saga of the past four years

By K. Satyamurty

BANGALORE, JULY 29. Jayakar Jerome would have completed four years as Commissioner of Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) in October. During his time, BDA transformed itself to become one of the most efficient and respected agencies of the State Government.

The remarkable changes in BDA began with a project that seemed endless but was given high priority: the decades-old Outer Ring Road project was completed within eight months, costing Rs. 182 crores. It covers 62 km and connects all major roads and highways in and around Bangalore.

The next major project completed was the Whitefield flyover near Krishnarajapuram. Built on the Outer Ring Road, it cost BDA Rs. 6 crores and is 478 metres long.

A bigger challenge was the Benniganahalli flyover, built on 477 pile foundations over a lake; the deepest pile is anchored 30 metres down.

This 2-km-long flyover, spanning six lanes, connects the ORR and Old Madras Road and cost Rs. 35 crores.

The third mammoth project was the Central Silk Board flyover that has made commuting to the Electronics City and Hosur Road less of a hassle. Keeping in mind the heavy vehicular traffic, it has an anti-skid surface and Rs. 23.50 crores was spent on it.

Environmental protection matched with traffic needs when the BDA took up and completed the Hebbal flyover, keeping intact the nearby lake.

The longest of its kind in the region, it is 5.35 km long with six lanes and six loops and has helped ease traffic congestion on National Highway 7. It will also become the gateway to the proposed international airport at Devanahalli.

Assumes charge

The Government on Wednesday shifted Mr. Jerome from the BDA and posted the Chairman of the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB), M.N. Vidyashankar, in his place. Mr. Vidyashankar assumed charge of his post on Thursday.

Mr. Jerome has been made Secretary, Department of Minorities Welfare, a newly created post. Mr. Jerome was given a farewell by the employees of the BDA today.


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