Steel flyover shelved, Karnataka government mulls tunnels costing Rs 600 crore/km
The Karnataka government is mulling tunnels at the cost of Rs 600 crore per kilometre in the name of decongesting traffic. Months after the government shelved the Rs 1,800 crore steel flyover project owing to protests, super expensive tunnels are being considered. Development minister K J George, who received massive flak for the steel flyover project, has claimed that a Bulgarian firm has been approached to check the feasibility of the project.
The estimated cost of the state government's 'tunnel project' makes the Rs 1,800 crore steel flyover project look like child's play. Pegged at mind-boggling Rs 600 crore per kilometre, the proposal is likely to be raised for four tunnels running across the city. The government is mulling tunnels from Hebbal to Chalukya circle which is a 6-kilometre stretch, Jalahalli to Goraguntepalya, an approximate 1.4-kilometre stretch, a 2.25 kilometre stretch between SRS Road and Pipeline Road in Peenya and a massive 8-kilometre stretch between Nayandahalli and Majestic.
K J George by his own admission has pegged the cost of every one kilometre of tunnel anywhere between Rs 500 and 600 crore. That is a massive Rs 4,809+ crore. K J George maintained that Bengaluru was 'unfortunately' an unplanned city and traffic needed to be decongested. Muck like in the case of the steel flyover project, the opposition is suspicious about this tunnel project as well while maintaining that the traffic issues in Bengaluru have to be addressed.
Citizens' groups that registered protests against the steel flyover have now started fuming over the government's proposal to build tunnels to ease traffic at mammoth budgets.