In what is expected to be another setback for the completion of the upcoming Mohali Junction (ISBT),the project is all set to miss its latest deadline of October 31. The project,which has missed several deadlines over the last few years,seems nowhere near completion as the deadline remains barely two months away.
However,C&C Constructions Limited,the Delhi-based company which has undertaken the project,says the ISBT will be functional by the end of October. We have committed to GMADA that we will not miss the deadline this time, Colonel (Retd) Charanvir Singh Sehgal told Chandigarh Newsline.
The GMADA official concerned,however,refused to go on record when asked whether the deadline is expected to be missed. But a close look at the construction site is enough to give one the idea.
Although the basic structure of the building is nearing completion,a lot more is yet to be done. I dont know about other things,but the work we are assigned to will take another year. Once we put on the aluminium sheets,well also have to work on fixing glass on the front side of the building, said a labourer working on installing aluminium sheets under the ceiling.
Another worker said that jobs like installing power supply equipment,drainage,water,paint and other finishing processes would take another six months.
Not one person working on the site agreed with Sehgals commitment of two months. To make matters worse,all the roads adjoining the site except for the National Highway 21 are in a pitiable condition. Craters,potholes and waterlogging have made them a nightmare for commuters.
Asked about the completion of the remaining two multi-storeyed tower complexes,Sehgal said that they were expected to be completed by June next year. However,very little work seems to have been done to construct two 13-storeyed and 18-storeyed towers,with the latter being slated to be the tallest building in Mohali,although no structure taller than the five-storeyed ISBT building is visible on the site.
There is a clear sense of deja vu in the way the deadlines are being declared. Two years ago in September 2011,Sehgal had stated that he hoped to start the bus terminus by November 2011. This,after the original deadline of June 2011 had been extended. The company has already paid around Rs 5 crore to GMADA for failing to meet the deadlines,according to a report.
With little change in the design or the plans of the project,what made it miss so many deadlines is hard to explain. Due to lack of construction material,escalation of costs and some issues with GMADA,which have been completely resolved now,the work had slowed down for more than a year. There were also other factors like the ban on sand mining which led to shortage of material, said Sehgal,adding that the total cost of the project was likely to be around Rs 80 crore more than the originally proposed amount of Rs 500 crore.
Coming up on more than six acres of land near Verka Chowk on National Highway 21,Mohal Junction will have three multi-storeyed towers,which will include a 10-screen cineplex,a four-star luxury hotel,a mall and a helipad. The ISBT will be operated from a five-storeyed tower while the 13- and 18-storeyed towers will house the hotel,office-cum-commercial space,a mall and a rooftop helipad. The 18-storeyed tower is projected to be a 225-feet tall building,making it Mohalis tallest.
The new bus stand is expected to make it easier for the residents of the city who frequently travel to Haryana,Himachal Pradesh,J&K and other neighbouring states and have to go to Chandigarh to board long-route buses.