Friday, August 22, 2008

Caution Bad Roads

Caution Bad Roads
Dug-up footpaths, piled-up debris, missing slabs and stagnant drains are a nightmare for pedestrians on Sanjaynagar main road. So is the frequent flooding of the stormwater drain for Sahakarnagar residents

The world-class road that never was Aarthi R | TNN
Bangalore: One of Bangalore’s dream roads is more like a nightmare.
The Sanjaynagar main road — a narrow thoroughfare known for its traffic jams and accidents, footpaths with missing blocks and slanted electricity poles, and dumped garbage — has residents wondering when they will get the black-top road, interlocked footpaths and proper drainage promised in 2006.
Records and reports suggest no crisis with respect to planning and expenditure. The project to upgrade and maintain infrastructure on this road — worth Rs 4 crore — was funded by the World Bank under the Karnataka Municipal Reform project. This includes asphalting work and road repair, building proper drains and footpath on the chainage of the 4.4 km-long road. The ambitious project, undertaken by KNR Constructions, Hyderabad, commenced on March 18, 2006, and was to be completed by June 16, 2007. However, apart from the asphalted main road, much of the other developmental work is yet to be completed.
“What shocks us even more is that a project involving the World Bank could deliver such a below-standard level of maintenance even a year after its official completion,’’ says V Sathyamurthy, president of Sanjaynagar Residents’ Welfare Association.
Wait till Nov, says BBMP
BBMP project director K T Nagaraj says there is no need to panic as the project will be completed in all aspects by November. Unexpected rain, alongside tender conditions and norms, caused a delay in completion.
“It’s not contractors but permission for cutting trees, shifting of utility lines and removing encroachments that have caused the delay. With asphalting of the entire stretch almost done, it is just these civic issues that remain to be sorted out. There should be no delay in its completion this year,’’ he asserted.
Of stagnant water and development TIMES NEWS NETWORK
Sahakarnagar: Located off the busy Hebbal Ring Road, Sahakarnagar has always been in the news for its perennial flooding problems, that force residents to call the BBMP control room even at 1.30 am. The most affected areas are not interior parts but located right at the entrance of Sahakarnagar. The damage is caused by an overflowing stormwater drain below the stretch of NH-7. The drain is uncovered and filled with overgrown weeds and thick deposits of silt.
Many residents say it only takes moderate rain to see the unasphalted roads waterlogged due to the drain overflowing. Shop owners have witnessed vehicles submerged and stalled in the flooded water, which reaches as high as three feet during a downpour.
Every season brings floods and some small-time relief measures by the BBMP which barely last a year. What is stagnant here is not merely flooded water but development too. “Our last collective representation on this issue was made in September 2007 as a signed petition to the National Highway Authority of India (for NH-7) and the BBMP. We’re yet to see a way out,’’ says Srinivasan, a resident of G-Block located behind the big market area. He has surfed through many such floods in the past seven years.


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