Three areas may share Millennium Depot's load

 The non-availability of a site large enough to accommodate 1,000 buses parked at DTC’s Millennium Bus Depot is giving a headache to both the transport department and the DDA and there is a possibility that the facilities at the depot may be split and taken to three separate small plots.

Sources said the relocation of the 60-acre depot from Yamuna river bed, as decided by the previous Arvind Kejriwal government, may take time till October.
“One of the sites being examined for shifting some of the facilities at the depot is at Mayur Vihar,” said a transport department officer who communicates with the DDA, which owns land.

A DDA officer said: “There is enough land in Delhi but the new sites must suit the requirements of the DTC.”

“This is the reason why it is taking time to find a suitable alternative site for the depot,” he said.

The bus depot has been in the middle of a controversy as, according to the Master Plan for Delhi 2021 the land could only be used as ‘river or water body’.

The depot was built ahead of the 2010 Commonwealth Games at a cost of Rs 60 crore. When the land was allotted to the DTC to take care of the needs of the Commonwealth Games, it was for the purpose of temporary parking. The buses parked in the depot during the sporting event ferried athletes living in the Games village which is a kilometre away.

Environmentalists later dragged the government to court alleging danger to the river from the depot.

The option before the government was to make changes in the Master Plan, by changing the land use, and bringing it in conformity with the present use. 

After fighting the case for some time in the court, the Delhi government informed the court that it would demolish the depot and needed time till October to do so.
Transport department officers said the DTC was dependent on the DDA for shifting the depot away from the river bed. “We cannot do anything on our own,” he said.
According to the Zonal Plan, the Yamuna flood plain can be put to use only for recreational purposes like bio-diversity park or garden. The construction of concrete structures is banned.

The depot, spread over 60 acres, has facilities such as eight washing pits, five parking centres, a water tank each for drinking purposes and the fire department, four underground water tanks for washing buses, seven dormitories capable of holding 500 people, two CNG stations and logistics park for GPS-related centre.

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