Sunday, January 03, 2010


Sundaram Architects, original creator of Jayanagar 4th Block shopping complex, will design its new look, giving it a swanky look, a la mall

The Jayanagar 4th Block shopping complex is set to get a swanky look with the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) giving a green signal for redesigning the project after mulling over it for two years.
Incidentally, the same builder who had designed the shopping complex in the seventies, Sundaram Architects, is recreating the complex. It was Sundaram who built the Garuda Mall on Magrath Road, a landmark in the city.
Though R Sundaram, the Group chairman, has designed several mega projects, designing the proposed theatre-cum-convention hall is very special for him. After all, he designed the existing Puttanna theatre in Jayanagar 4th Block in 1973.
The theatre, named after prominent Kannada film director Puttanna Kanagal, has remained closed for many years. After 36 years, Sundaram has got an opportunity to design the new theatre-cum-convention centre.
Sundaram has fond memories of the place. “I still remember Lakshman Rao, the administrator of then Bangalore Municipal Corporation (now BBMP), had shown a lot of interest in completion of the project and used to inspect the site daily at 7.30 pm,” he said.
Jayanagar did not have a place where all facilities were available under one roof. The shopping complex fulfilled that demand. Its most prominent feature was the vegetable market that could accommodate 136 stalls.
Another unique feature was its shell-shaped roof. “After completion of the project, in the initial days, none came forward to occupy shops. Later, the complex drew tremendous response from businessmen,” he recalled.
“The Puttanna theatre was those days called Poonam theatre. The BMC had given the theatre on lease to a private party. The theatre has a seating capacity of 500. The sad part was the authorities concerned did not care for the maintenance of these buildings,” said Sundaram.
According to him, the new convention centre has been designed to accommodate 1,200 people. The vegetable market, the cold storage and Janata Bazaar will make way for the new theatre complex. The complex will have three levels of basement parking that can accommodate 800 cars and 300 two-wheelers. A provision has also been made for commercial complexes and food courts.
“We also plan to have an exhibition area on each floor of the theatre complex where we could create a ‘hall of fame’ for Kannada film industry,” said V Rama Murthy, vice-president (engineering), Sundaram Architects.
The existing Puttanna theatre area will make way for the vegetable market and Janata Bazaar.
The complex will have lifts and escalators, including a separate freight escalator. It will be completely fire-proof with all the fire safety equipment like sprinklers. “We will also have a back-up diesel generator in case of power cuts,” said Murthy. The complex will be partly dependent on solar power.
The design also includes a segregated pathway for pedestrians. It will have ramps to make it accessible to the differently-abled.
Jayanagar MLA B N Vijaya Kumar told Bangalore Mirror, “The Puttanna theatre is among the oldest in the city. It has been closed for the past seven to eight years. Cine lovers have been demanding its renovation. Considering this, the new project has proposed to convert the theatre into a convention centre.”
The project, which is estimated to cost Rs 99.7 crore, is expected to
be completed in two and
a half years.
Jayanagar, one of the largest residential colonies in south-east Asia, saw its largest shopping complex being constructed during D Devaraj Urs’ chief-ministership.The project was implemented after obtaining consent from the state cabinet. The complex, built on 15,000 sqmts, had shops, stalls, restaurant, a wholesale yard, a cold storage block and a theatre with parking.


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