Friday, November 30, 2007

It's a road to chaos

It's a road to chaos
Marathahalli boasts swanky apartments, IT firms and glitzy showrooms. Amid mounds of garbage and muck. Here you will see luxury vehicles moving on mud tracks. Today we take a look at the mind-boggling traffic woes.


Marathahalli was a village 15 years ago, but now it’s a booming residential and commercial hub. With many factory outlets selling branded garments and concentration of IT firms, it is growing in leaps and bounds.
It’s also home to the first multiplex in the City - Innovative Multiplex. The multiplex offers best of facilities - game zone, theatre, food court and ample parking space.

It is an area with rich residents but poor civic amenities. It is just 2 km from HAL airport. Shoppers do business in lakhs everyday, but there is no space for customers to park vehicles. Same is the fate of the common public. Many residents own property worth crores, but struggle hard to get drinking water. Those having borewells sell water at Re 1 per pot.

Come weekend, the Marathahalli Main Road is flooded with thousands of vehicles. Hundreds of customers throng shops. Four-wheelers are parked on sidewalks as there are no parking yards.

Professionals, particularly those wor king in IT firms and enjoy two-day holiday during weekends, find Marathahalli the best place to shop. Reason: Outlets of more than 250 factories, be it apparel industry, leather industry or jewellery, are located here.

“This is the best place in south India to shop for consumer goods. Business here is bigger than that of MG Road, Brigade Road or Commercial Street. You should see how we struggle to manage our customers, particularly during weekends,’” said Niranjana Murthy, manager of Colour Plus, ready-made garment shop.

Shops on the road are open throughout the week. “Employees enjoy holiday on a rotation basis. We do good business when IT professionals get holidays. On any Saturday, our shop makes over a lakh rupees. During festivals, sales increase,” said Tahir, manager, Park Avenue showroom.

However, all is not well on the road. Shoppers feel they can do better business provided traffic woes are addressed properly. “I have to leave home (Koramangala) by 8.30 am if I have to each my shop in Marathahalli by 10.30 am,” said Ananth, manager, Colour Plus.

Every day, he spends nearly four hours riding his motorbike to and from the store. “Though business is good, we lose many customers because of the traffic. Many customers who get fed up with traffic jams on Marathahalli Road choose to visit either Commercial street or Brigade Road,” he said.

Infrastructure upgradation

Marathahalli is the area where Bangalore City is growing at a high speed. Many IT firms are setting up their firms in the locality. It is the area where high-storey apartment complexes are coming up in large numbers. As a result, traffic movement is increasing by the day. The Palike has taken up upgradation of roads in Marathahalli sub-division at a cost of Rs 10 crore. We have taken up upgradation of all major roads in the area. The work will be completed by end of the present financial year.

Another major problem in the area is drinking water supply. The BWSSB has taken up a project to provide Cauvery water for residents of new areas of the Palike. As much as 80 per cent of the work is complete, pipelines have been laid and feeder line set up.

Narayanaswamy, JC,
Mahadevapura Zone (BBMP)

Apartment complexes

There are 4,000 apartment complexes in the erstwhile CMC and gram panchayat areas. Now, the have been brought under BBMP. Of these, 1,000 apartments are in Marathahalli alone.

Builders feel there is a huge demand from the public for houses in the locality. Mr D V Raghu, general secretary, Bruhat Bangalore Builders’ Association, said new apartments are coming up in the area. However, meeting the demand for water is a difficult task. There is no supply of Cauvery water. Builders have to depend on borewells, while the groundwater table has got depleted. Water is available only at 800 ft deep.

Mr Raghu said builders are going in for rainwater harvesting to meet the demand for water. Every new apartment is coming up with such a rainwater harvesting system.


Marathahalli is a hub of IT companies and high-rise apartments. Many new complexes are coming up here. A new shopping mall with over 200 showrooms is coming up on the road.

“Our customers come in four-wheelers, but there is no parking space. On week days, we try to provide space in front of our shops, but during evenings and weekends, it’s difficult,” says Niranjana Murthy of Color Plus.

Abdul Raheem, who runs a shoe shop, says BBMP should consider setting up a parking complex close to Marathahalli Main Road. “You will not find any space on sidewalks during weekends. Vehicles are parked everywhere. Police find it hard to handle traffic during peak hours. A parking complex is the only solution,” he said.

Nicole Fernandes, a businesswoman, said residents have to deal with traffic congestion every day. “During peak hours, travelling on Marathahalli Main Road is a cumbersome task. Police deployment has to be increased.

Besides, the bad condition of roads has affected traffic movement,” she said.

Ridhima Gupta, a housewife, feels effective measures must be taken to prevent traffic snarls. “Traffic jams need to be controlled. Schoolchildren face a big problem while crossing roads. They should be provided with safe roads,” she said.

According to K C Ramamurthy, Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic), Marathahalli Main Road sees heavy traffic due to the construction of a bridge. “More traffic police personnel will be deployed to ensure smooth flow of traffic apart from making use of services of Home Guards. Unless the number of vehicles comes down in Bangalore, there is no end to the traffic woes,” he said.

Property price

The price of a built-up area in Marathahalli varies from Rs 1,600 to Rs 2,000 per sqft in apartment complexes with 50 flats. However, price goes up to Rs 3,000 per sqft in bigger apartment complexes. The price of sites varies from Rs 1800 to Rs 2,300 per sqft.

Special Features

Hub of IT firms, apartments
Best choice for IT professionals for weekend shopping
Nearly 1,000 apartments in an area of 40 sqkm
More than 250 factory outlets
Shoppers do business worth lakhs on weekends
Has the first multiplex of the City


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