Better Days Wait For Busy Bannerghatta Road In Namma Bengaluru
Chief Minister Siddaramiah did announce in March that eight Bangalore city roads would be widened to 45 meters in the Revised Action Plan 2015. That was certainly welcome news for motorists who live through hellish experiences on a daily basis. Struggling each day with noise and pollution, narrow roads and traffic congestion can be debilitating on the nerves, heart and soul.
Yet hardly anybody in the vast metropolis spares a thought to all the property that gets uprooted in the process. Compensations do come, but many properties are swallowed up partially or completely. Yet so it was the price that inevitably paid for the development process.
Consider the unique case of Bannerghatta Road. You have certainly heard of that major venue from being a city outskirts locality to super fast development within a short duration. The Bannerghatta Road boasts of several tech companies that Bangalore is famous for besides super-specialty hospitals. Every reason to be there or in the vicinity! Besides, educational institutions and apartment complexes abound in this bustling area that has been a driving nightmare. Now with the road widening coming along, traffic would ease with better chances of safety and a peaceful existence.
Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) wished that the road be restricted to 120 feet in view of the second phase of the Metro rail project that is soon to come. The Karnataka State Government feels it is justified to increase the road width of 45 meters (147.6 feet). BBMP wanted the widening to extend to 35 meters (114.8 feet) only.
BBMP will acquire properties that stand in the way through the process known as Transfer of Development rights. No barrier remains now with the project report ready and funds allocated in the budget for the widening process. The widening would cost about Rs. 150 Crores. Delays arise in the process of TDR and it is only natural that the aggrieved parties do not wish to part with their properties.
The widening would affect 405 property owners. Some properties that would be affected partially are Fortis and Apollo Hospitals besides IIM, Bangalore. Though notices have been served, property owners are not coming forward to obtain TDR. The demand is for increasing the floor area ratio on TDR from 1.5 to 2.5 levels.
The second phase of Metro would extend from Jedi Mara Junction to Chicken Farm. These points are located on NICE Road on Bannerghatta Road. The 7.5 KM length now ranges in width between 22 and 28 meters. As many as 272 buildings along with 122 vacant sites and 11 temples would have to make way for the widening of the stretch.
Public enterprises, often see inevitable delays and meanwhile it is the turn of the unscrupulous elements to make hay while the sun shines. The Metro Rail project has held Bangalore to ransom for several years. Though people would finally be happy at the superfast, reasonably charged hygienic transport facility, it is not before a huge price is paid in terms of properties lost in the development process.