October 14th, 2016
Karnataka Government Gives Nod To Build Steel Bridge
Despite heavy protests by citizens of Bengaluru against building a bridge, the Karnataka government on Thursday gave its nod to the extension of the controversial project. A steel bridge is going to be constructed that will ease the traffic movement to Kempegowda International Airport.
The government’s decision may fuel the protest planned on Sunday. Critics are heavily opposing the project, citing that the per-kilometre cost of the project will take the total cost between Rs 1,800 to 1,900 crore. It will also lead to the destruction of more than 800 trees. Citizens have moved to the court against the project. They want the govt. to look for alternatives before going with the current solution and they alleged that the govt. lacks planning to solve the ever increasing congestion problem of Bengaluru.
The flyover was initially planned from Basaveshwara Circle to Hebbal. Now, it will extend till the elevated road near Esteem Mall. According to Bengaluru development minister to KJ George said, the steel bridge which will run parallel to the Hebbal bridge and is expected to provide a seamless and signal-free journey to airport-bound travellers.
The Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) has already started the preparatory work on the project. BDA officials are now conducting internal surveys along with land acquisition and engineering departments. According to Times Of India, the survey will suggest the extent of private land required for the project.
After the sanction, Bengaluru citizens, like last Sunday, are planning to come out on the streets coming Sunday also. They are planning to form human chains in protest against the state cabinet’s okay. KJ George on Wednesday had tweeted that the department will address concerns like cost, likely damage to heritage buildings and the need to cut down 812 trees, promising that 60,000 saplings will be planted elsewhere in the city.
The plan to build a Metro link to the airport has already been dropped by the government since it will create woes to the city’s environment. The citizen group has argued that such a huge expenditure to cut down travel time to the airport by 7-10 minutes is even justified.