The most ambitious 65-km Peripheral Ring Road (PRR) was announced by the government in 2005 is finally out of the box and the state and the central government will now execute the project through a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV). The ministry of road transport and highways (MoRTH) has assured the state of investing 50% in this project.
Said Mahendra Jain, additional chief secretary to the urban development department: “A month ago, we got an offer from the Centre, saying it wants to contribute 50% to the project.The approval to form the SPV has already come from the state government. But we have not got any official assurance from the Centre so far. But the minister guided us to go ahead and form the SPV with our without the Centre’s involvement. “
The government will constitute a 15-member board to work out the details of the project.
The state government has roped in the Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development & Finance Corporation (KUIDFC) to help get finances from the Centre and state for the SPV . The six lane expressway will be a tolled road. The BDA has also mooted a plan to double the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) in the 1.5km radius along the route, which will interest the real estate developers.
The primary reason for the delay in executing the project has been opposition from farmers from around 51 villages. Initially, the authorities notified 1,989 acres, of which it decided to acquire 1,920. The detailed project report (DPR) pegged the project cost at Rs 9,600 crore, out of which Rs 5,800 crore was earmarked for land acquisition; road building cost was estimated to be Rs 3,800 crore. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) had agreed to pay for the road construction but not for land acquisition. This further burdened the state and dealing with farmers became tough. However, land acquisition cost has now swelled to Rs 8,100 crore and farmers have finally agreed to part with land if they are paid the compensation in full. Meanwhile, the project cost has escalated to Rs 11,200 crore, say officials.
Of the 100m road width, 75m will be developed into a six-lane highway . The remaining 25m strip will be used as a service road.