Nice can build flyover but should not collect tolls: Palike

Says will not spare a penny for grade separator from Sirsi Circle to BHEL

Nice can build flyover but should not collect tolls: Palike

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) will allow the Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise (Nice) to construct the 3.1-km flyover from Sirsi Circle to BHEL Circle on Mysore Road but with conditions such as that it will not collect tolls.

The project, which the BBMP is to take up under public-private partnership with the Nice, figured in the civic agency’s budget for 2014-15 presented on Monday.

A senior Palike engineer said the BBMP would not allow the Nice to collect the tolls on the flyover. “Collecting tolls on a flyover within the BBMP limits is against the Karnataka Municipal Corporation (KMC) Act,” said the engineer who did not want to be identified.

The Palike will not also approve the project if does not have up and down ramp towards Kengeri near the BHEL junction, the engineer said.

Once completed, the flyover will give commuters access to the Bangalore Mysore Infrastructure Corridor (BMIC), the controversial tolled motorway project being implemented by the Nice.

The flyover project had been in limbo for more than 17 years because of various reasons, including protests by some people living near BHEL Circle. It was part of the framework agreement the Nice had signed with the State government on April 3, 1997.

That agreement was, however, challenged on the basis of land acquisition issues as a large number of private properties may be required for the flyover project.

The Nice, however, claimed in a letter to the BBMP that the Supreme Court as well as the High Court had upheld the said agreement. M S Shivaprasad, Chairperson of the BBMP’s Standing Committee on Taxation and Finance, was categorical that the BBMP will not spare a penny on the project and the Nice will have to bear the entire cost. “It is beneficial for both the BBMP and the Nice, so we do not have any objection in approving it,” he said.

Dissenting voices

The moot question, however, is why a private enterprise would spend a whopping Rs 300 crore on a flyover without expecting any returns. Already, there are dissenting voices within the BBMP about the project.

Senior Palike officials felt that the Nice might be allowed to collect tolls and the flyover would be accessible to only those who would go on to use the BMIC.

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