BENGALURU: Commuters along Bannerghatta Road will soon be relieved as the ongoing road-widening project has picked up pace with state government’s top official stepping in to assist Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP). This was after the horticulture department agreed to surrender half acre land to the BBMP without an immediate demand for compensation.
The Chief Secretary of Karnataka, T M Vijay Bhaskar, has instructed the horticulture department to immediately hand over the land to BBMP. The road-widening work between Jedimara Junction and Koli Farm junction, that passes beneath NICE Road, running to a length of 7.4 km was started in early 2018. One of the major portions of land belonged to the horticulture department. BBMP’s effort to acquire the land had gone futile as the department demanded land of equal value in some other part of the city.
According to BBMP, of the total 7.4 km-stretch where widening is taking place, the BBMP has land for about 3 km already. About 60 per cent of the land required for the remaining stretch has also been acquired.
N Manjunatha Prasad, BBMP Commissioner said, “We must thank the Chief Secretary for helping us getting the required land for the infrastructure project. A procedure that would have taken years together was done within a few coordination committee meetings held by him. We can complete the proposed work at least six months early,” he said. BBMP has currently taken possession of the land and will soon start the asphalt work. The BBMP is also contemplating to construct other civic utilities at the place, he said.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, Nandesh J R, Executive Engineer, Road Widening said, “The BBMP has already taken possession of the land and the work will begin soon. We have already widened the road on various packets of land along the stretch and we expect that the project will see 80 per cent of completion by March 2020. The long pending procedure to acquire the required land is over, and the work has picked up pace,” he said.
The project will cost `150 crore that involves 298 private properties to be acquired, 117 vacant sites and 11 temples. The BBMP had earlier faced opposition by property owners and local residents along the stretch for axing more than 80 trees.