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French connection: UT may collaborate with foreign experts

Tourism promotion,uplift of villages are the likely areas of this coming together

Written by Khushboo Sandhu | Chandigarh | Published: August 12, 2013 2:06:53 am

The UT Administration is contemplating collaboration with the French municipal committees for getting expertise in different areas. Tourism promotion and uplift of villages are the likely areas where this collaboration is expected.

The officials of the administration and Municipal Corporation have held meetings with the officials from the French municipal committees. The deputy mayor of one of the committees as well as architects have visited the city. Once the areas where expertise can be shared are decided,approval would be sought from the Centre for getting the green signal.

During the meetings that have been held,certain areas have been shortlisted where the French can guide Chandigarh. These include promotion of tourism which is under the administration and uplift of the villages which are under the Municipal Corporation. Chandigarh has a long-standing French connection with its creator Le Corbusier being a Swiss-born French architect. The design of a number of buildings conceived by Corbusier can be seen in France as well.

UT Adviser K K Sharma,who has stayed in France for a year for a study programme,says,“We are exploring the possibility of collaboration with the French municipal committees. Though meetings have been held,we are in the process of finalising the areas where expertise can be exchanged. Approval would be taken from the Centre for the same.”

The municipal committees in France have relatively smaller population as compared to Chandigarh where there is one MC for a population of 10.55 lakh people. The exchange of expertise would not entail any monetary help. It is being contemplated that the experts visiting each other’s country would bear the travel costs on their own while the stay would be arranged by the host country. The terms and conditions are likely to be finalised in the coming days.

The administration has over the years not been able to do much in terms of tourism promotion. Apart from the landmarks of the city including the Sukhna Lake and Rock Garden,not many additions have been made over the years. Rather,the proposals that have been mooted time and again have not seen the light of day.

Proposals are now on the anvil to revive Sector 17. It is being contemplated that apart from the plaza,the remaining part of the sector also needs to be livened. For this,it is proposed that commercial activity be allowed on the upper storeys which is not permitted as per rules. In fact,the office buildings in the sector might be shifted out.

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