Even as the State government is considering a proposal to bifurcate or trifurcate BBMP, the civic body on Monday approved the plan to construct a ‘BBMP Bhavan’, a 29-storeyed building, as its headquarters. This was deemed as “unnecessary” by some councillors in the BBMP Council’s monthly meeting on Monday.
The civic body’s head office is spread across 10.78 acres, which has five buildings including a main building, council building, two annexe buildings and a Rajkumar Glass House.
There is a proposal to shift the glass house to Kanteerava Studio. In its place, a 29-storeyed building with a 1,29,750-square-metre built- up area has been proposed at a cost of Rs 400 crore.
This building will have a three-floor parking lot, which can accommodate 900 cars. “At present, there is a demand to park 500 cars and the BBMP is finding it difficult to get the required space,” senior BJP Councillor Sadashiva told Express. This will an be eco-friendly building, he added.
However, a councillor said the proposed building will have a meeting hall with seating capacity of 260.
“At present, there are 251 members, including 198 councillors, 20 nominated councillors, 28 MLAs and three MPs in Bangalore. If the government decides to bifurcate or trifurcate the BBMP, the number of elected representatives in each of those agencies will be much less. This means, a new hall with a seating capacity of 260 seats will be unnecessary,” he said.
At the meeting, Mayor B S Sathyanarayana was at the receiving end for the proposal of constructing the BBMP Bhavan under private-public partnership (PPP). Interestingly, most of the councillors who opposed the plan were from the ruling party (BJP).
JD (S) floor leader R Prakash raised the issue and questioned, “When there is a discussion going on to bifurcate or trifurcate the BBMP, what is the need to construct one BBMP Bhavan at such an exorbitant cost?”
Yelahanka MLA Vishwanath (BJP) demanded clarification on the construction of the Bhavan. “If we lay roads under PPP model, private parties will collect money as toll fee. If we take their help to build the BBMP Bhavan, will they occupy some of the floors? If so, how can private people use the BBMP premises?” he asked.
Dr Rajkumar Road Councillor Gangabyrayya (BJP) said the Bhavan will be a historic building.
“If we give it to private people, it will become just another commercial complex. Let us discuss with elected representatives, including MLAs and MPs, and take a decision,” he said.
Former mayor S K Nataraj asked why a private party should come forward to construct a building for the civic body without any profit.
“Let us seek the State government’s help in this regard. We shall construct the building on fund sharing basis between the government and BBMP,” he said.
Opposition leader Manjunath Reddy suggested to utilising MLAs’ and MPs’ grants.
Hosahalli Councillor Dr Raju (BJP) asked what was the need to spend the tax payers money on this.
“Instead, let us construct a hospital,” he suggested.
Siddapura Councillor Udayshankar (Congress) said the city does not have sufficient place to park vehicles, including those of Councillors.
“When that is the situation, constructing a commercial complex will worsen the situation,” he said.