The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has started with its homework, in a bid to merge the elevated road from Jayadeva junction to Central Silk Board with Metro’s R V Road – Bommasandra line. The preliminary research and other procedures are underway.
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The flyover planned to be extended till Central Silk Board at a cost of Rs.150 crore has already been announced in the maiden budget of the Congress government.
“The project is still in the preliminary stage. A feasibility report and DPR is yet to be formed, which needs to be assigned to a consultant,” says BBMP Executive Engineer, Major Roads and Infrastructure Development, Basawaraj Kabade.
BMRCL yet to receive notification
On the other hand, Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) is still waiting to be notified by the government of Karnataka. On request of anonymity, a BMRCL official says: “We have not yet received any direction from the state government. Till we receive it, we will continue with the same plans.”
BMRCL has already initiated steps for acquiring land for the re-alignment as reported earlier by Citizen Matters. However, BMRCL sources believe the integration of the elevated road with Metro will not require any re-alignment, as the Metro will run along the centre of the road.
BMRCL Public Relation Officer, B L Y Chavan says: “We need to study the plan and then decide about integration. Technical aspects have to be measured and then the best option will be implemented.”
However, Chavan did not comment on the process of reported ongoing survey for acquisition already started by BMRCL. If BMRCL receives orders from the state government to integrate the roads with the Metro. Again the plan will be required to seek approval from Government of India, as Metro is partially funded by central government.
BBMP’s plan yet to be finalised
One of the designs proposed by Kabade is to draw two arms from the Metro pillars for the two roads that will run on either side of the Metro. At the completion, it will look like a tree with three branches. The central platform will be used for Metro and the other two arms will carry elevated road.
“This is not a final design, it needs to studied. The plans are at a very naive stage.It is unpredictable at this point to say whether any extra pillars will be required to support the two elevated roads,” says Kabade.
At present, Jayadeva junction has an underpass on north-south and a flyover on east-west, that divert traffic from Bannerghatta Road to Jayanagar and BTM Layout. There are three levels of traffic arrangements functioning already in this area.
“No modifications will be done to the underpass or flyover. Once we are done with the feasibility report, the consultants for both BMRCL and BBMP will plan together to shape it further,” says Kabade.
So at this point,
1) It not clear in which point the integration of Metro and elevated road will take place.
2) It is also not clear what will be the funding pattern if there is going to be an integration.
3) The structure and the design of the integration are also not clear.
Urban Land and Transport Minister and MLA of BTM Layout, Ramalinga Reddy says that he will ensure that BBMP and BMRCL coordinate the work with each other.
Plan was with BDA earlier
“The same corridor was proposed by the previous government which was given to Bangalore Development Authority (BDA). However, due to fund crunch, the BDA could not complete it and has passed it on to us,” said Somashekhar Chief Executive Engineer, Major Roads and Infrastructure Development, BBMP.
This year, the BDA transferred the project to BBMP through a written letter. Major Roads and Infrastructure Department of the BBMP has taken the responsibility of the corridor.
Residents welcome the integration
Residents embrace the proposed plan of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) as it will reduce the number of properties to be acquired.
In the recent budget, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah (Page 81, point 404 – Budget speech) has allocated a budget of Rs.150 crore for the elevated road from Jayadeva junction to Central Silk Board to ease the ever-increasing traffic in this part.
Since the time Chief Minister proposed the elevated corridor, residents were concerned about undue expenses by government on different consultant agencies involved in the same project which could be easily amalgamated. They were also worried about the acquisition of more properties for the elevated road.
These residents in order to safeguard their properties, filed RTI appeals, wrote letters and requested BMRCL to take the Metro underground or at least integrate it with the proposed elevated road from Jayadeva to Silk Board.
The efforts have borne fruits. Ramesh K, Co-ordinator of Citizen’s Futuristic Bangalore, has no doubt on the completion of integration of the Metro and elevated road, as the elevated road already has funds reserved from the state government.
One of the property losers, Anil Kumar (45), Freelance Consultant in Strategy and Project Management welcomed the news even when he would lose his property. The plan of merging the two has brought about some respite to all these worried residents.
However, Ramesh points that the government agencies failed to coordinate with each other. “Three months ago, when the BWSSB had arranged a meeting to discuss the issue of three pipelines that lay under the proposed Metro line, no BMRCL engineers attended the meeting,” said Ramesh.