BBMP to invest in 29 skywalks based on demand

Despite their rising unpopularity, BBMP is going to invest its money in building 29 skywalks in the city. 

Out of the 153 proposed skywalks, only 37 are completed by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP). Instead of completing the pending skywalks, the Palike has proposed 29 new structures at various locations considering “huge demand”. BBMP’s decision to fund the project, at a time when it is struggling to fund other projects, is baffling.

The civic body cites other infrastructural projects in the city for the delay in the construction of unfinished skywalks.

“Many skywalk constructions are put on hold and some have not even started yet as there are metro stations coming up in some areas, along with ongoing road widening and white-topping works,” said a BBMP official. The bidders are refusing to take up certain projects, he added.

According to the official, 29 skywalks were proposed after considerable pressure from the Bengaluru Traffic Police and citizen activists, concerned about pedestrian safety.

“These 29 structures may encounter hurdles again due to other civic infrastructural projects,” he added.

BBMP Commissioner, N Manjunath Prasad, said the skywalks in the city were supposed to follow the public-private partnership (PPP) model initially. “There are no takers for most skywalks. But there are areas that are demanding skywalks. Hence the BBMP has decided to invest. DPR is ready for the 29 skywalks and work orders have been issued. The project might cost more than Rs 50 crore,” said Prasad. 

BBMP will soon launch online monitoring of lifts and escalators on all the skywalks in the city, including the proposed 29, to check if pedestrians are actually using the skywalks. “Bosch has taken up the project to monitor online sensors. It is yet to get the green signal,” said the official. 

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