Hawking zones likely on bicycle tracks, on-street parking space

July 23, 2014

Prasad Kulkarni,TNN

PUNE: Roadside parking, even unused cycle tracks in the city, can soon be the place for hawkers to do business. The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) is contemplating such a move to rehabilitate vendors.

“There are 20,000 hawkers who have to be settled. The civic administration does not have enough space to rehabilitate them, so various options such as cycle tracks have been considered. The officials are also looking at an option to accommodate hawkers in some parking places,” said sources at PMC’s anti- encroachment department.

The sources said there are some roads where people park their vehicles, unofficially. They will be converted into parking and some section will be given to hawkers. In some cases, the existing roadside parking space will also be used.

The civic administration has made markings on some cycle tracks which some activists and political leaders have opposed. “The administration is considering the use of cycle track space which has met with little opposition. The hawkers will be allowed to operate from the cycle tracks provided they are not a nuisance to traffic or pedestrians,” a senior PMC official said.

The PMC has developed a network of cycle tracks and footpaths from SNDT College to Prabhat Road, Fergusson College to Sant Dnyaneshwar Paduka mandir and Model Colony to University Road using JNNURM funds.

Additional commissioner Rajendra Jagtap said the civic administration has not taken any final call on these moves. “There are some options which we will consider on a pilot basis. A committee designated for this purpose will decide. A meeting of all the stake holders will be conducted before a final decision,” he told TOI.

As per the Supreme Court order on September 13, 2013, and directives of the state government’s urban development department on October 21, 2013, the civic administration has to allow all vendors to do their business. Accordingly, the PMC has planned hawkers’ zones across the city. The PMC administration had also decided to do a biometric census and provide all hawkers with UID numbers.



South corpn gets six lanes to collect toll

March 3, 2014

Written by Aneesha Mathur | New Delhi


Civic body to reimburse NHAI, IDFC for arrangements; will pay rent for land, toll booths, office


Commercial vehicles entering Delhi on the Jaipur-Delhi expressway will now have to keep towards the left in order to pay toll tax at the toll plaza at Sirhaul. Six out of 16 lanes has been dedicated for the South Delhi Municipal Corporation to collect toll tax.

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday accepted a compromise agreement between the corporation and the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), under which six lanes on the extreme left of the Delhi-bound carriageway will be kept for toll collection.

The compromise was reached after the High Court ordered the NHAI and South municipal corporation to resolve the matter through discussions, while ordering that the toll plaza at the Sirhaul border be dismantled.

The South corporation had opposed dismantling of the toll plaza, claiming that it would make it impossible for the civic body to collect entry tax from commercial vehicles.

The decision to remove the toll plaza had been taken after long negotiations between the NHAI, IDFC and the erstwhile concessionaire of the expressway, DGSCL.

The court on February 19 had accepted the agreement between the company, IDFC and NHAI, transferring control of the load to an IDFC-led consortium.

The NHAI had then stated that the structure be dismantled to ensure smooth flow of traffic and four lanes be given to the South corporation for toll collection.

The NHAI had also said that it was not responsible for providing the infrastructure for the corporation to collect toll.
As the corporation opposed the move, the court directed the agencies to hold a meeting to discuss the issue and come up with a compromise.

The NHAI and IDFC have agreed that the toll collection booths and islands of the toll plaza will remain as is, while “improvements” would be be taken up to alert the traffic by providing bollards at the nosing of the island. The IDFC has also agreed to install a “traffic calming device” before the approach to the traffic islands.

The South corporation has agreed to reimburse the NHAI and IDFC for the arrangements and will also pay a rent for use of National Highway land, toll booths and office space.

The court of Justice Manmohan Singh in its order on Wednesday accepted the terms of the agreement and asked the Haryana Police to “give the assistance and to do the needful” to implement the agreement.



Coastal road: Two consultancy firms show interest

December 13, 2013

Wednesday,   | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

DNA Correspondent

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) request for proposal (RFP) to appoint consultant to obtain environmental clearances for the ambitious coastal road project has received responses from two companies.

Pentacle Consultants Private Limited and Stup Consultants, both based in Mumbai, are the two companies which have expressed interest in BMC’s RFP.

One of the two companies will be appointed to prepare detailed project report (DPR) and propose a cost effective model to implement the multi-crore project, besides procuring the environmental approvals.

This is the third time the civic body has sought RFP for the multi-crore project. Earlier, it had sought interest from private players in February this year. However, only one firm had responded then. It sought RFP in March with four companies coming to the fore. But those companies did not fit the bill technically.

“The BMC will scrutinise applications by the two agencies which will take at least 15 days.

Financial bids are expected to be opened towards December-end. If all goes as planned, a proposal on appointment of consultant will be tabled before the standing committee in January,” said a senior civic official.

According to officials, the BMC may not seek RFP again as it will be a time-consuming process.

Once approved by the standing committee, a consultant will have to prepare the project report and procure clearances from Ministry of Environment and Forest within 450 days. “It is important the consultants procure permissions within stipulated time frame to ensure the project work begins in near future,” the official added.

The project
The proposed 35.6-km road stretch between South Mumbai and Kandivli will start at Manora MLA House in Nariman Point. It will tread through a tunnel between NCPA and Air India building. It can be accessed from 18 points on the stretch.



Four Aurangabad roads to be ‘white-topped’

December 7, 2013



AURANGABAD: The Aurangabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) today declared that it would reconstruct four main roads in the city with the help of ‘white topping’ technology. Mayor Kala Oza said that work on roads between – Kranti Chowk and Paithan Gate; Gade Chowk and SCC Board; Lemon Tree hotel and Jalgaon Road; and the road between SBI on Jalgaon Road and Central Naka would soon begin. “We have already called tenders for the job and it will be opened in two to three days,” she said.Oza also said that the civic body would announce names of three more roads to be built with this new technology. In addition to this, under the first phase, the civic body will begin repairing of seven roads using conventional (black topping) technology. Names of these roads are yet to be finalised.

The cash-strapped AMC had recently said that it would spend Rs 30 crore on road repairing in two phases. Oza said that the second phase will begin within the next two months.

Executive engineer in the civic body, Silkander Ali, said, “White topping technology is quite common in cities like Mumbai and Pune and roads built with this technology do not develop potholes for more than 15 years after construction.”

BMC terms for road works drive contractors away

November 26, 2013

TNN |  

MUMBAI: Two road repair contracts worth Rs 170 crore have failed to receive any bids. Contractors said the conditions set by the BMC were not practical.Despite the BMC extending the dates for submission of bids, no contractor showed interest. Monday was the last day to apply.

The contracts, worth Rs 73 crore and Rs 97 crore, are for road repairs in the eastern suburbs and the island city.

The eastern suburbs are the most in need of attention after failing to get a single new road last year because of a court case.

Now, the boycott of sorts by contractors means people must continue suffering bumpy rides on the roads. As the tendering process is back to square one, many fear that the works would not get done even by next monsoon, the time of the year when roads suffer the most.

The municipal corporation now needs to decide whether to give some more time to contractors or go for a relook at the tender conditions.

Contractors said the municipal corporation had, for the first time, increased the defect liability period for cement-concrete roads to 10 years from five years and contractors were expected to keep a bank guarantee for 11.5 years, which included 15 months of project execution and 10 years ofthe defect liability period.

“The BMC every year changes norms and clauses to bid for tenders,” a contractor said. “So far this year the municipal corporation has issued four tender packets; the corporation has not allowed a joint venture in three packets and allowed a joint venture in the fourth packet. How can they have different rules for each packet?”

A source said that BMC rules allowed for joint ventures in projects that are worth more than Rs 25 crore, so it was illogical to not allow joint ventures in road projects.

PCMC may build new road in Pimple Saudagar

November 18, 2013


PUNE: The Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation’s (PCMC) administration may construct an alternative road in Pimple Saudagar to link the area to Sangvi-Kiwale bus rapid transit (BRT) route.The existing two-km road from Planet Milleniumto Rakshak chowk passes through defence areas. It is often blocked by defence personnel causing inconvenience to over 10,000 local residents.

The road is the easiest route for residents of Pimple Saudagar to reach Aundh, Baner and other areas. If closed, residents have to take a longer route to access Sangvi-Kiwale road to reach these areas. About a year ago, when the road was closed, the civic officials had to seek the intervention of the divisional commissioner to solve the impasse.

Therefore, the civic administration has planned to construct an alternative road at the stretch as well as to widen the old road, from the municipal school till Rakshak chowk, to 20 metres. The civic body has tabled a proposal before the general body.

A civic official said the alternative road will be 18-metre wide and will pass from survey no 59 to 121, adjacent to the defence land. The PCMC has possession of more than 70% of the land needed for the project. The estimated cost is Rs 8.70 crore, whereas the civic body needs Rs 1.50 crore to widen the old road.

Shirish Poreddy, spokesperson for the engineering department, said, “The department will prepare a detailed project report after approval from the GB for both projects. Bids from private contractors will be invited.”

The project report will indicate how much land is needed form private land owners and the defence authorities. “Both roads will have four lanes and footpaths,” he added.

Local NCP corporator Nana Kate said, “Earlier, there was a road from Pimple Saudgar till the post office located ahead of Rakshak Chowk along Sangvi-Kiwale road. But, the defence authorities closed the road 25 years ago, after which the existing road was built. This road also passes through the defence land.”

Kate said the development plan 14 years ago had proposed a road from Planet Millenium to Ginger society, further to Shivar chowk and ending at Jagtap Dairy on the Sangvi Kiwale road. But farmers had opposed land acquisition and the road could not be developed.

“These farmers had later sold their land to some builders, who are now willing to give it for the proposed road. However, this road cannot be a good alternative to the existing Panet Millenium-Rakshak chowk road as people will have to travel a longer distance,” Kate added.

Anita Shinde, a local resident said, “The road from Planet Millenium to Rakshak chowk is too narrow and must be widened so that the vehicles can travel faster.”

Rohit Mane, a local resident said, “The civic body has acquired land from the defence authorities for widening the Pune-Mumbai highway. Similarly it should acquire the land for widening this road that passes through defence land. The defence authorities should give the requisite land for road widening in public interest.”

State waqf tribunal stays part of road construction

November 16, 2013

Niraj Chinchkhede, TNN |

AURANGABAD: The state waqf tribunal on Thursday directed the Aurangabad Municipal Corporation ( AMC) to maintain status quo on a part of road construction work between Little Flower School and Cantonment Idgah campus.

The waqf board had approached the tribunal seeking the civic body to temporarily restrain from doing any sort of construction work in the waqf suit property at survey number 6, 7/2, 8 and 31 in Old Qutubpura, Jaisingpura (Cantonment).

In its petition, the Idgah and Kabrstan Committee claimed that the civic body had commenced the work without taking a no-objection certificate from the owners of the land – the waqf board. Abdul Hameed Khan, secretary of Idgah and Kabrstan Committee, the land was reserved for a graveyard. “However, the municipal body had encroached the front portion of the land measuring 600 ft X 15 ft, thereby violating the norms. The market value of the encroached land is in crores and the civic body should compensate the owners before taking its possession,” he said.

Khan said he had raised objection over the construction work in 2008. “At that time, the municipal body had promised that it would measure the actual length of the land coming in way of road widening and offer compensation for the same. However, the civic body has now started the work without even giving any compensation,” he said.

After conducting survey of the site, the Idgah and Kabrstan Committee members and a group of Muslim community people said the work of periphery wall of the graveyard was not being done abutting the road. “The authorities have pushed it about 15 feet inside the graveyard to widen the road. But there are number of graves in the 15-feet area. While doing excavation, the municipal body is also digging skeletons which is highly objectionable,” Khan said.

The municipal corporation had recently started construction work of the road with an investment of Rs 12.5 crore. After allotting the tender to a contractor, it took the civic body six months to actually start construction work on the development plan road connecting Town Hall and Little Flower School.

Contending that there is substance in the application, the tribunal also issued a show-cause notice to the municipal body.

The civic body officials refused to comment on the issue.

Amidst protest, 8-laning project to start today

November 15, 2013


LUDHIANA: The Rs 209-crore project of 8-laning of Ferozepur Road will be inaugurated on Friday. Despite strong criticism, the civic authority decided to go ahead with the project saying it would give the city a makeover.

While residents concede that the plans areimpressive, they doubt the MC’s commitment to see them through to the end. The host of projects left incomplete by the MC include rejuvenation of Buddha Nullah and four-laning of Doraha-Ferozepur Road. They are also apprehensive about the pace of the project.Kamaljeet Singh, a resident of Civil Lines, who has been living in Ludhiana for the last 20 years said, “I have seen Ludhiana changing but the corporation has taken a long time to complete its projects, which irritates residents. If they plan to start, they must not stop midway, which will be a huge disaster.”

According to Paramjeet Arora of Ghumar Mandi, “The MC should have completed old projects first but if the proposal is sanctioned and guarantees to change the look of the city completely, I don’t mind. But that does not mean the MC should stop working on other projects.”

Plastic waste will soon pave Bangalore roads

November 5, 2013

Pavan M V, TNN |

BANGALORE: If Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike’s plan for plastic waste piling up in dump yards is executed, your ride on city roads could be much smoother.

BBMP may soon provide land for a plastic waste recycling company which will produce granules which will be used for asphalting roads. The company will also produce items like plastic buckets, mugs, etc. The civic body feels using plastic granules for asphalting will not only improve the quality of roads but also ensure they last longer.

The proposal is to lease out land to the company for 10-15 years and it’ll be tasked with collecting plastic waste at the ward level. This will not only reduce the quantity of plastic waste going to landfills but also save money used for transporting them. Plastic waste is non-biodegradable and hence poses a grave threat to the environment. The details and timeline of the project are likely to be finalized later this week.

The Palike spends around Rs 800 crore annually for solid waste management. Of the 5,000 tonnes of waste generated every day, 3,000 tonnes is dry waste including 15-20 tonnes of plastic.

Since 2005, BBMP has asphalted around 2,000km of road using plastic in different parts of the city, including stretches of MG Road, Trinity Circle and Old Airport Road. BBMP has taken up a project of asphalting roads at a cost of Rs 400 crore.

A BBMP source said shortage of plastic granules has resulted in not mixing sufficient amount of plastic in asphalting units.

BBMP commissioner M Lakshminarayana said a discussion with engineers will be held soon to implement this project. “In future, plastic granules will be used to the maximum for asphalting roads,” he added.

Expert speak

“It’s a good project and 8% of plastic can be used for asphalting. Currently, BBMP gets Rs 5 to Rs 6 for every kg of plastic waste but pays Rs 26 per kg of plastic granules. This is a commercially viable project where BBMP gets processed plastic. We have to see what benefits will accrue to BBMP for providing land”. — V Ravichander, civic analyst

Times View

The BBMP’s plan to tackle two pressing problems at one go bodes well for the environment as well as for motorists. The scourge of plastic waste has been difficult to eliminate and the proposal to put it to good use for asphalting roads is a great example of waste to wise. It’s now up to the civic body to issue all the necessary clearances swiftly so that the project can be implemented. The city can surely do with less plastic waste and smoother roads, and the sooner the better.

NMC set to recarpet Central Avenue

November 1, 2013

Proshun Chakraborty, TNN |

NAGPUR: The city’s busy commercial district, Central Avenue, is also known for rampant violation of traffic rules and poor roads. One is the reasons for this is Nagpur Municipal Corporation’s (NMC) decade-long neglect of road maintenance in the 9km stretch from Mayo Hospital Square to Prajapati Square connecting Ring Road.

Now, the civic administration has finally decided to relay the entire stretch. A senior civic official told TOI that the road was last tarred during the Integrated Road Development Project in early 2000. As the quality of work was good, the road lasted for over half a decade. But in the recent past, the condition of both sides of the road started deteriorating, with motorists suffering bumpy rides.

Mahesh Kulkarni, a resident of Gandhibagh, said, “When citizens are suffering due to bad roads, the civic body is wasting tax payers’ money to suit their whims and fancies. The ruling party has no control over the administration, which does not appear to be serious about the city’s development.”

The civic body’s apathy can be gauged from the fact that the then standing committee chairman Dayashankar Tiwari had on February 18 this year approved the civic administration’s Rs 6.04 crore proposal for tarring this road. Even municipal commissioner Shyam Wardhane gave his nod for the works on February 26, but nothing has moved since then.

Sources, however, said that due to financial crisis the civic administration delayed the recarpeting work of the stretch.

Now, the proposal will again come up before standing committee chairman Avinash Thakre for his nod in a meeting on Friday. Sources said this time the civic administration has made some changes to the proposal. As NMC’s hotmix department is flooded with tarring works, it plans to rope in Nagpur Improvement Trust’s hotmix plant for the tarring of Central Avenue. The money will be paid to NIT through internal book adjustment between both civic agencies, said a senior official. NIT will start the work after Diwali, the proposal states.

Apart from this road proposal, the civic administration will also table proposals to tar 35 other roads at a cost of Rs 11.86 crore. Welcoming the civic administration’s decision to recarpet roads, motorists said now NMC should ensure quality works.

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