Infrastructure

Karnataka: Government Unveils Ambitious 190 km Tunnel Project To Tackle Bengaluru's Traffic Woes

V Bhagya Subhashini

Oct 06, 2023, 03:41 PM | Updated 03:39 PM IST


Bengaluru Tunnel Road Project (Swarajya)
Bengaluru Tunnel Road Project (Swarajya)
  • Within the next 45 days, the state government intends to invite public tenders for this ambitious project.
  • Due to the substantial scale and funding requirements of the project, it will be executed in multiple stages.
  • Karnataka's Deputy Chief Minister, D K Shivakumar, announced on Thursday (5 October) a plan to alleviate traffic congestion in Bengaluru with the construction of a 190 km long tunnel.

    Within the next 45 days, the state government intends to invite public tenders for this ambitious project.

    Speaking at a press conference held at Vidhana Soudha, Shivakumar stated, "We are proposing the construction of a 190 km long tunnel road to address the traffic congestion in Bengaluru. Eight qualified companies will be tasked with preparing a feasibility report, and we plan to issue public tenders within the next 45 days."

    These companies will assess various aspects, such as the tunnel road's specifications (four or six lanes), starting and ending points, and whether it should extend further within the city.

    Due to the substantial scale and funding requirements of the project, it will be executed in multiple stages.

    Shivakumar emphasised the immediate priority areas, including Bellary Road, Old Madras Road, Esteem Mall Junction to Mekhri Circle, Miller Road, Chalukya Circle, Trinity Circle, Sarjapur Road, Hosur Road, Kanakapura Road to Krishna Rao Park, Mysore Road to Sirsi Circle, Magadi Road, Tumakuru Road to Yeshwantpur Junction, Outer Ring Road, Goraguntepalya, KR Puram, and Silk Board areas.

    He stressed the need for a four-lane tunnel road for Bengaluru and mentioned the importance of accelerating key projects, especially drainage systems for rainwater, with the monsoon season ending, reports Economic Times.

    When questioned about seeking assistance from the Central government to alleviate Bengaluru's road congestion, Shivakumar responded affirmatively, stating, "We will indeed seek assistance from the Centre. Once these proposals are ready, we will submit them to the Central government. I have already met and discussed this matter with Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, who has provided valuable advice and expressed a positive response."

    Initially proposed by K J George during his tenure as Bengaluru development minister in the previous Congress regime, the tunnel roads and elevated corridor network projects have faced opposition from civic activists and mobility experts.

    Despite being included in the Congress manifesto for the 2023 assembly polls and making progress towards implementation, the public is once again raising objections. Critics have labelled it as a narrow focus and a result of limited vision.

    According to Sandeep Anirudhan, a citizen activist, the government's estimated expenditure on the tunnel project could be better utilised in developing a comprehensive multi-modal infrastructure for Bengaluru, reports The Hindu.

    This would involve investing in mass rapid transit, metros, suburban trains, increased bus services, improved first and last-mile connectivity, cycling lanes, pedestrian-friendly areas, and more.

    By prioritising these initiatives, Bengaluru has the potential to become a truly international city.


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