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BBMP engages 5 firms to white-top 138-km of road

Officials said not all the roads will be white-topped at once. 'The work will be taken up only after obtaining permission from the traffic police,' M Lokesh, chief engineer of the BBMP’s projects department told DH.
Last Updated : 16 April 2024, 21:13 IST
Last Updated : 16 April 2024, 21:13 IST

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Bengaluru: Five construction firms have bagged the contract for white-topping a total of 134 roads in the city at an estimated cost of Rs 1,600 crore. The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) – which has completed the tender formalities – plans to take up the work after the Lok Sabha elections. The civic body has, however, not dropped a few roads that are largely in good condition and did not require a concrete layer on top immediately. 

Officials said not all the roads will be white-topped at once. “The work will be taken up only after obtaining permission from the traffic police,” M Lokesh, chief engineer of the BBMP’s projects department told DH

While the BBMP’s projects department has been entrusted with the responsibility of white-topping 67-kms of road at an estimated cost of Rs 702 crore, the road infrastructure wing of the civic body will be white-topping about 71-kms of road at an estimated cost of Rs 850 crore. A part of the project cost is funded by the state government and the BBMP will be funding the rest by setting aside the revenue it generates from the property tax. 

The BBMP will be spending about Rs 11.59 crore for white-topping a kilometer of road, which includes a mix of many lanes, along with re-development of footpaths.   

In December 2023, the civic body had started the work of preparing the detailed project report (DPR) and the tenders for the white-topping work were floated in February. Documents show the BBMP issued the work orders to all firms in March and clearly in a hurry, anticipating the announcement of model code of conduct (MCC). 

The five companies engaged by the BBMP are: RNS Infrastructure Ltd, Oceans Construction India Ltd, NS Nayak and Sons, JMC Constructions Ltd and Appaji Builders. Barring two, all other companies have bagged more than two packages. For speedier construction, the BBMP had divided the entire Rs 1,600 crore project into 14 packages covering about 25 assembly constituencies. 

Companies such as NCC Ltd, Amrutha Constructions – which had the experience of white-topping roads in Bengaluru – did take part in the tenders but quoted more than the successful bidders, documents show. Interestingly, all the successful bidders had quoted more than the BBMPs estimates but the premium was brought down to government-approved 5% after negotiating with the contractors. 

Despite a public outcry, the BBMP has not dropped roads such as M G Road, Race Course road, Kensington Road, Cubbon Road, Palace Cross Road, Ambedkar Veedhi, KR Circle, Swami Vivekananda road, JC Road from the list although these stretches are relatively in a good condition or may just need a layer of asphalting.

Cut-off box - Financial allocation BBMP projects department to cover 67-km of roads at Rs 702 crore. BBMP road infrastructure wing to cover 71-km of roads at Rs 850 crore. BBMP to spend Rs 11.59 crore/km including lane expansion and footpath redevelopment. The cost is approximately 4 times greater than that of traditional asphalt paving.

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Published 16 April 2024, 21:13 IST

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