‘Roads not passive infrastructure’

BANGALORE: Roads in future will be able to carry wireless signals, generate solar power via fences and also transport water along with providing roll-on-roll off services for people not wantin

Published: 03rd February 2012 05:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2012 05:48 PM   |  A+A-

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Rural Development Minister Jagadish Shettar inaugurating the seminar on green field expressway in Bangalore on Thursday | Sudhakar Jain

BANGALORE: Roads in future will be able to carry wireless signals, generate solar power via fences and also transport water along with providing roll-on-roll off services for people not wanting to drive their cars, according to C Kandasamy, Special Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, GoI.

All this will be possible however only if non conventional methods of problem solving are considered.  Delivering a talk on ‘Green Field Expressway’ at  FKCCI (Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry) on Thursday, Kandasamy said, “Roads will not remain as passive infrastructure and conventional access controlled expressways, but become much more.”

He stated that the government and all stakeholders must start adopting best practises from successful countries, “Are we ready to redefine our roads in three dimensions? Not just width and space but vertically as well,” he asked, adding that roads would incorporate green townships and other amenities like ‘hole in the wall’ kiosks and residential and commercial towers at cloverleaf interchanges for displaced people. Kandasamy also stated that the entry of private enterprise in the planning and implementation of CORD of their choice, which would connect NH to NH along with the inclusion of people in the entire process would give rise to a new method of PPP (Public-Private Partnerships) which would change the tag of affected families to benefited families. “Viability gap financing also must change to viability gap development,” he said adding that rights would be given to the Concessionaire.

Discussing challenges and concerns in terms of funding, Kandasamy suggested the forming of a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) with unified powers instead of operating through various silos like the State Government, Central Government and various departments.  He called for a holistic view of projects instead of addressing the needs of each sector and increased private sector funding and participation.

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