Agencies yet to to fix responsibility
The nearly 17-km stretch on Outer Ring Road between Central Silk Board and K.R. Puram, where metro work is picking up pace, is proving to be a nightmare for motorists. Despite holding meetings on ways to ease traffic disruption, the authorities have yet to fix responsibility on maintenance of the road.
The potholes, and mud that has accumulated on the road, especially on flyovers, are posing a risk to motorists and cyclists. The poor maintenance of pavements is a concern for pedestrians. A year ago, ORR was hailed for introducing bus priority lanes, but the bollards, on some stretches, have either been damaged or removed.
“I travel on ORR from Hebbal every day. The road is fine till we cross Lowry School; after that there are many craters. With the recent heavy rains, the condition of the road has further deteriorated,” said Pratheek R., a motorist. If that isn’t bad enough, metro work has made matters worse. “The roads have become narrow at many points where work is ongoing. The authorities should take measures to make sure that roads on the entire stretch are maintained on a regular basis,” he added.
Ravikumar, another motorist, said, “Like many other roads in the city, the authorities neglected this stretch too. More and more people have started returning to office, and the numbers are likely to increase in the coming months. The failure to fill potholes and clear mud accumulated on the road is a hazard.”
A few days ago, the Outer Ring Road Companies Association (ORRCA), representing the companies located on the stretch, highlighted their problems in a tweet to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other elected representatives.
“As you focus on rebuilding our economy, Bengaluru Outer Ring Road with 8.5 lakh employees that contributes significantly to India’s GDP are looking forward to welcoming our people back to office. However, the state of ORR infrastructure does not reflect the focus of the nation on attracting FX and investment in infrastructure to become a 5 trillion economy,” stated the tweet. The message was posted on social media, in the wake of the Prime Minister’s visit to the city which has since been postponed.
The ORRCA wants the civic authorities to come out with a comprehensive plan to develop ORR and roads that connect it to residential layouts, newly added villages to the BBMP, and others.
A BMRCL official said, “We are in touch with the BBMP on maintenance of the road. Metro work is going on the median of the road, we are not touching service roads barring construction of the metro stations. In the coming days, we will decide on what we are supposed to do, and what will be the role of the BBMP.”
However, when contacted, Chief Engineer (Road Infrastructure) of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike B.S. Prahlad said: “BMRCL which is implementing the metro project will take up maintenance work, such as fixing potholes, resurfacing, replacing bollards and others. The discussion is on. We will shortly sign an agreement with the BMRCL on the road’s maintenance.”
BMRCL is likely to maintain the main carriageway till the completion of the metro work, whereas the civic body will maintain service roads and pedestrian pathways.
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