With the State Government making allocations in the budget for the Broadway and Ernakulam Market Heritage and Urban Renewal Project, the Kochi Corporation authorities are planning to start its implementation by April.
The project was sanctioned in 2010 under the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) at an estimated cost of Rs 22 crore. But the delay in the launch resulted in cost escalation taking the total project cost to Rs 34 crore.
“Though the State Government had given in-principle nod for the tender excess, the project was at a standstill. The decision to allot the work to Marymatha Construction Company was taken after scrutinising the tenders.
But, we were not able to allot the work owing to the delay in allotting state’s share for the project. The Union Government’s share will be 50 per cent of the total project cost. Out of the remaining 50 per cent, 30 per cent will have to be contributed by the State Government,” said a top corporation official.
He said that now with the government allotting funds for projects under JNNURM, the Broadway renovation project will soon be awarded. The State Government has set aside Rs 471.17 crore for the JNNURM projects that will be carried out in Thiruvanathapuram and Kochi. The Ernakulam Market Heritage and Urban Renewal Project mainly aims at the beautification of the Broadway and the Ernakulam Market without interrupting the heritage value and character of the existing structures. Introduction of proper waste management, beautification of the walkways and providing roofing for the area are other key components of the project.
The Fort Kochi and Mattanchery Heritage Conservation Programme will be officially launched by April this year. The Rs 51 crore heritage conservation programme, mainly aims at protection, conservation and utilisation of heritage resources in Fort Kochi and Mattanchery area. The project is being implemented with the help of UNESCO, the French city of Lorient and Indian Heritage Cities Network Foundation (IHCNF).
“A three-day workshop will be held in the second week of April in Kochi, which will be attended by representatives of the entire agencies who are associating with this project,” said a Corporation official. The total project cost is estimated at Rs 51 crore. The other key components of the project include the improvement of street lighting to ensure maximum safety, revamping and modifying the streets of Mattanchery and other heritage buildings in the area without affecting the heritage value.