Palike adds to Tagore Circle mess

BBMP thinking of acquiring public land for commuter pathway

With no footpaths, it will indeed be a testing time for citizens as the BBMP has further messed up its venture of the grade separator at Tagore Circle by digging the stretch at the other end of the underpass near the Basavanagudi Club. And this, without completing the work in front of the Basavanagudi police station.

The civic agency had recently announced that it had opened up one of the two service roads between Tagore Circle and Basavanagudi police station for public use.

While vehicular movement has been made convenient from Basavanagudi Police Station to Tagore Circle, it has been unable to complete its work in the other direction. As Palike officials claim to open the other service lane ‘shortly’, they are clearly behind their schedule for completion.

Moreover, many glitches are hobbling the timely completion of the project. When the project was launched, the BBMP did not express the need to acquire land from the public.
But now, it has stated its need of acquiring portions of a residential complex to ‘smoothen’ the service road. In the present situation, the civic agency needs at least 35 feet on either side for the service road with a footpath.

"We are in the process of acquiring private land. We have asked residents of a nearby apartment to part with a portion of their property so that a good service road can be built," a BBMP official said. Although prices for acquiring private properties have not been fixed, the location where the underpass has come is likely to have a hefty ‘price tag’, BBMP sources said.

In the interim, even before both the service roads are operational, the BBMP has dug up the whole stretch on the other side of Tagore Circle near the Basavanagudi Club.

There is very little space left for the service road near the Club and the only alternative before the BBMP is to acquire a portion of Club's property, sources said.

The controversial turn-key project has also run into cost overruns. Expected to cost Rs 19 crores when it began, it has now gone up to Rs 28 crores. The Palike, which initially claimed of completing the project within about eight months, is well behind the schedule.

Voices

“The whole project is a burden on residents of Basavanagudi. The pace and the manner in which the project is being executed is giving us a horrid time.”

Satish Chandra, Advocate

“The noise and vibration caused by heavy machines and the dust the construction work generates has given rise to problems of public health. Many people have developed bronchitis, asthma and sleeplessness.”

Shaila, resident

“Initially, the BBMP promised that only nine trees would be felled due to the grade separator but now we are told that 80 trees would be chopped down.”

Suresh, resident

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