Smart City project ready for take-off

Smart City project ready for take-off

The much-delayed Smart City project is all set to take off in the city shortly. The Union government released the first instalment of Rs 50 crore for the project about a month ago.

This has set the process in motion, as the special purpose vehicle (SPV) constituted to carry out the ambitious project, is in the process of finalising tenders for various developmental works.

“We have received the funds from the Central government and there are sufficient funds from the state government as well. We have cleared a number of projects and have asked the SPV to float tenders,” said BBMP commissioner N Manjunath Prasad, also the managing director of the SPV.

“Some of the roads that were supposed to be developed under the Nagarothana project will now be taken up under the Smart City project. The funds that were supposed to be given by the state government will be transferred to the SPV for these works,” Prasad added. Bengaluru, which was among 30 cities chosen for the Smart  Cities Mission programme by the Union government in 2017, has been waiting for things to fall in place since then to begin work. “With detailed project reports (DPR) ready now, we will start the project soon after the tenders are finalised,” he said. Another reason for the delay of the project was due to a shortage of technical experts. “I cannot have an entire set of people to work for the Smart City project as well. The engineers who have designed and worked for TenderSURE roads will also work for this,” he said.  

When asked if there was any confusion on whether it is the SPV or BBMP that calls for tenders, Mahendra Jain, additional chief secretary of the urban development department said: “The SPV will call for the tenders. If there are any convergence projects involving both the BBMP and the Smart City project, the tenders can also be called by the BBMP. There is no confusion about this.”

The initial projects that are likely to be taken up are the improvement of markets and development of TenderSURE roads, said Jain.

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