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Roads, traffic, bridges get the lion’s share in BMC budget

For a smooth ride in the city, civic body allocates Rs 3,857.53 cr for 2015-16, up by 36.25% from last year.

Written by Anjali Lukose | Mumbai | Published: February 5, 2015 2:49:36 am
Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte presents the BMC budget on Wednesday. (Express photo by: Prashant Nadkar) Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte presents the BMC budget on Wednesday. (Express photo by: Prashant Nadkar)

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), in its budget for 2015-16, has promised focus on flyovers and roads with higher allocation of funds for traffic operations, roads and bridges, allocating Rs 3857.53 crore for the same, which is 36.25 per cent higher from the last year’s allocation. No new infrastructure projects were announced this year.

Of its Rs 33,514.15 crore budget for 2015-16, the civic body has projected a total capital expenditure of Rs 11,836 crore, which is 7.56 per cent higher than the current year’s budget estimates for the same.

A major chunk of the capital expenditure, Rs 3,200.35 crore, has been allocated to the roads and traffic department, almost 38.59 per cent higher than last year’s capital expenditure budget estimates.

While the Goregaon Mulund Link Road, which will improve east-west connectivity, has been allocated Rs 300 crore, the long-awaited Coastal Road project proposed to connect Nariman Point and Kandivali has been allocated Rs 200 crore.

The civic body has also promised smoother roads this year, allocating Rs 1,854.69 crore, which is more than half of the roads and traffic department funds, for asphalting roads.

Breaking with tradition of concentrating only on motorised traffic, BMC has this year introduced the “pedestrian first” policy, aiming to create even footpaths with “uninterrupted” width of 1.5-3 metres depending upon the width of the road.

mumbaiThe biggest jump in allocation was for flyovers and bridges, for which the BMC has set aside Rs 657.18 crore, an increase of almost 97.44 per cent compared to last year.

The civic body has also given funds to railways to demolish and reconstruct Hancock and Carnac as well as Vikhroli railway overbridges, Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte said.

For water supply and storm water drains departments, Rs 1,862.43 crore and Rs 1,097.65 crore have been allocated, respectively.

Water supply

To bridge the 2520 MLD gap between water supply and demand in the city, the state water resources department has allocated Gargai, Pinjal and Damanganga rivers to the civic body, on which BMC will spend Rs 140.36 crore in 2015-16.

“The Centre has also promised to aid us in the water supply from Damanganga in Gujarat, which assures water security for Mumbai. BJP leader Uma Bharti also had a meeting with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis regarding this,” Kunte said.

A major chunk of the water supply budget for 2015-16 will be utilised in laying surface water pipeline and connecting those with water main at a cost of Rs 513 crore. Kunte also announced to set up a dedicated Customer Care Centre for water supply services by June. BMC will begin procuring mechanical meters in 2015-16 at the cost of Rs 25 crore and complete its installation in three years.

To make the city flood-proof, the BMC will spend Rs 376.43 crore on the BRIMSTOWAD to improve the storm water drainage system of the city. It will also revise the BRIMSTOWAD master plan for phase 2 and the tender procedure for surveying, mapping and modelling of road-side drains and minor drains will begin shortly.\

anjali.lukose@expressindia.com

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