Saturday, May 27, 2006

Commercialisation shatters peace in Victoria Layout

Commercialisation shatters peace in Victoria Layout
Deccan Herald

In the face of rapid commercial development, the laid-back residential locality of Victoria Layout is trying to come to terms with the new reality — unauthorised constructions, growing commercialisation of residential premises and infringement of privacy and peace.

Call centres, call taxi providers, courier agencies to carpet sellers - all have opened shops in the bylanes of the layout, much to the growing concern of residents.

According to a member of the Victoria-Palmgrove Residents’ Welfare Association, a taxi operator, who runs his business from a residential property owned by a bureaucrat, has created a parking menace in the area. “Two cross roads have become parking zones for these taxis, leaving no space for movement of vehicles. The taxi drivers dump waste food and garbage into stormwater drains (SWD) and urinate along compound walls of residential buildings. Incidents of eve-teasing have also been reported against them,” she said.

While renting out of properties to small companies has worsened the parking problem in the area, an upcoming bar-cum-restaurant inside the layout premises has made the residents furious. “All these are against the stipulated norms for a residential layout. We have written several times to the Bangalore Mahanagara Palike and the Traffic Police, but have received no response,” says the treasurer of the association.

Another fallout of this uncontrolled growth is the choked SWD. Not only is this main drain vulnerable to flooding, it has also contaminated drinking water channels. As a proof, a resident of a luxury apartment shows her aqua filter that has turned black with muck.

“This has collected over the last fortnight,” she says, pointing at the blackish water. “The upgradation work of the SWD is yet to be taken up at the stretch running through our layout. If this is the situation, we are wondering how it would be once the monsoon sets in,” a resident rued.


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