'Brand Bengaluru' in focus as BBMP allocates Rs 12,369 crore budget for initiative

BBMP has proposed several infrastructure developments, including widening the roads connecting Kanakapura Main Road to Bannerghatta Main Road and Hennur to Bagaluru, which links to Kempegowda International Airport.
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Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) allocated a budget of Rs 12,369 crore for the city on Thursday, February 29 with focus on the 'Brand Bengaluru'. Shivanand H Kalakeri, the special commissioner (finance) of BBMP, disclosed that the opening balance for 2024-25 stands at Rs 12,371 crore, comprising Rs 8,294 crore from internal sources and Rs 4,077.59 crore from central and state government grants. The budget envisions a total expenditure of Rs 12,369 crore, leaving a surplus of Rs 2.17 crore.

He said that BBMP received around 70,000 suggestions from diverse sections of society for the 'Brand Bengaluru' initiative. Following scrutiny by an expert committee, these suggestions have been forwarded to the BBMP restructuring committee, led by retired chief secretary BS Patil. To ensure timely funding for these initiatives, BBMP has pledged to allocate tax revenue generated through new revenue department policies and reforms directly to 'Brand Bengaluru' projects.

The ambitious tunnel road project has been allocated Rs 200 crore in the budget, with plans to construct a pilot tunnel in two densely populated areas, although specific locations have yet to be determined. 

Read: Bengaluru tunnel roads: Yet another decongestion solution not grounded in reality 

BBMP has proposed several infrastructure developments, including widening the roads connecting Kanakapura Main Road to Bannerghatta Main Road and Hennur to Bagaluru, which links to Kempegowda International Airport. The BBMP is also working on the enhancement of Padarayanapura road in Chamarajpet, with a budget allocation of Rs 130 crore. Moreover, Rs 50 crore has been earmarked for the skydeck project.

In addition to these plans, the Budget proposes the acquisition and development of land on a Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) basis to create alternate routes to Kempegowda International Airport via Sadahalli Gate on Ballari Road and another route from Sathanur Meesaganahalli. There are also plans to collaborate with the Railway Department to construct a railway overbridge connecting Kengeri Suburb with Mysuru Road, with a Detailed Project Report (DPR) to be prepared.

As part of decentralisation of power and to foster a more accessible administrative system, each BBMP zone will be overseen by a Zonal Commissioner, who will be appointed from the Indian Administrative Service (IAS).

The Sancharayukta roads initiative aims to develop road infrastructure by acquiring buffer areas of rajakaluves on the city outskirts through Transfer of Development Rights (TDR). The plan involves constructing lanes for light vehicular traffic and cycle lanes on both sides, covering a total distance of 300 km. This project is estimated to cost Rs 600 crore and will span three years. An initial grant of Rs 200 crore was provided in the 2023-24 fiscal year, with an additional Rs 100 crore proposed in the current budget.

The Sugama Sanchara scheme aims to enhance road quality by undertaking white-topping of 145 km of roads over two years, with a budget of Rs 300 crore. The State government plans to contribute Rs 800 crore towards this endeavour. Under the Clean Air Scheme, there's an allocation of Rs 135 crore to construct pedestrian-friendly walkways spanning 45 km. 

Read: Explainer: White-topping of Bengaluru roads and why there’s a probe into the project  

The budget announced that administrative approval has been granted for the construction of a rotary flyover at an estimated cost of Rs 380 crore. This flyover aims to connect Sir M Visvesvaraya Railway Terminal in Byappanahalli. The budget also proposed the construction of a double-decker road, an Integrated Metro and Road Flyover project, in collaboration with K-RIDE. An allocation of Rs 100 crore has been made for this initiative in the civic body's outlay. An initial grant of Rs 50 crore will be provided to develop Transit Oriented Development SkyWalk (TOD), connecting the TTMC of BMTC with Namma Metro Station via a circular dome-shaped escalator.

The budget also announced implementing utility zones for parking at the base of BBMP's playgrounds, ensuring no disruption to playground facilities. A grant of Rs 5 crore has been allocated for this purpose.

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