City's Revised Master Plan runs behind schedule

City's Revised Master Plan runs behind schedule

To be ready by December instead of August, says BDA official

City's Revised Master Plan runs behind schedule

The Revised Master Plan (RMP) -2031, the vision document for the development of Bengaluru, is behind schedule by five months, say persons working on the plan.

What should have been ready by August 2015 will now be ready by December 2015 provided there are no further hurdles.

Persons familiar with the preparation of the plan, on the condition of anonymity told Deccan Herald: “The delay in preparation of the plan is about five months. One of the hurdles was a court case, where a petition was filed questioning ‘how the BDA could part with the City’s planning exercise to a private firm and consultancy.

What will be the accountability of the company and what if the company flees in case it makes a mistake?’ Sorting this out has taken time. The other issue is why the BDA takes decisions with regard to activities under the plan preparation very slowly? Each decision has had the whole bureaucratic set-up involved. The court case and the slow decision-making has hit the speed of plan preparation, which means more expenditure.”

The BDA however, maintains that there has been no delay and all decisions have been taken appropriately. BDA Town Planning Member Chowde Gowda said: “Saying that there is a delay is easy, but getting work done is difficult. Bengaluru is a vast city and mapping the entire city is a herculean task. Imagine surveying every house, site, school and layout.

All this takes enormous amounts of time and work on the ground. What if we make a small mistake like identifying a school or a home as hostel? Do you think people will keep quiet if we make such an error? The volume of work is enormous. So we are trying to go about the task in a methodical and systematic manner. Please keep in mind that we have to cover an area of 1,200 sq km. We are trying to ensure that there is no error in the data mined.”
‘Consultations hijacked’

Gowda pointed at a major hurdle that is not easy to overcome. “We have arranged public consultations, but we notice that every time certain vested interests hijack the consultation. We are not sure who these interests are and who they represent

. People called for public consultations and we duly responded. If you ask whether we are facing any problem in the plan preparation, it is this element of vested interests that needs to be identified. They kill people’s participation.” The last public consultation which was held about two weeks ago ended up in chaos.

“People are free to communicate their objections on any day and not just on the day we hold a public consultation,” the BDA official said.

Despite this, BDA is confident that it will be able to meet the December 2015 deadline. “We are targetting December 2015 as the final date for submission of the plan. While the most important hurdle will be vested interests, there won’t be problems with regard to different activities of plan preparation like mapping, projection and survey. All activities are important. There won’t be any hierarchy. We expect the process to be smooth henceforth,” he said.

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