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Mangalore: Proposed Ring Road around City - will it Ring in a New Era?

by Richie Lasrado
Resident Editor

July 19, 2007

Mangalore: All those who have genuine concern for our city's development into a metropolis have something to cheer about.

Map design: Pinto Vamanjoor / Shalmi

A highly ambitious project aimed at constructing a 100-ft wide, 31-kilometre-long 'Mangala Corniche' is on the anvil. This is expected to ease the pressure on the intra-city road traffic as also speed up the movement of vehicles on the three major national highways - NH 13 (Sholapur-Chitradurga-Shimoga-Mangalore), NH 17 (Panvel-Mahad-Panaji-Karwar-Mangalore-Kannur-Kozhikode-Ferokh-Pudu-Ponnani-Kochi) and NH 48 (Nelamangala-Hassan-Mangalore).

Many projects are necessary for the city, especially in terms of infrastucture like roads. There is a talk among the citizens that the present MLAs have not been doing enough in this direction. If people say Mangalore MLA Nandavar Yogish Bhat could have done much more, his supporters say that the limits of his constituency almost coincide with the city corporation jurisdiction and hence he cannot do much in this regard. In any case, if this project materializes, he will have had the credit of having established a long-lasting memento to mark his stint as the local MLA.

Now that Bhat has also an additional responsibility as the chairperson of the Karnataka State Industrial Investment and Development Corporation (KSIIDC), the much-awaited project has been resuscitated. Interestingly, the proposed ring road will run around the city from  the Ullal brigde through Bunder, Sultan Battery, Kulur bridge, Maravoor bridge, Gurpur bridge and therefrom across the Adyar hilltop to join NH 48 at Kannur (not to be mistaken for Kannur in Kerala, formerly known as Cannanore) off Padil but it will not touch the Arabian Sea anywhere. The road will intersect Kulur, Maravoor and Gurpur bridges.

The total cost is estimated at Rs 500 crore. Union and state governments are expected to bear the cost. If all goes well, work on the project is expected to commence in three months. A joint venture of the city corporation (MCC), Mangalore Urban Development Authority (MUDA) and the Karnataka Housing Board (KHB), the work will be executed by a special purpose vehicle (SPV).

A survey of the 12-km stretch, costing Rs 12 lac and making use of Global Positioning System (GPS), has been completed as part of Phase I (Total cost Rs 100 to 120  crore).

The five phases are:

1. Kulur-Ullal
2. Kulur-Maravoor
3. Ullal-Kannur
4. Maravoor-Gurpur
5. Kannur-Gurpur

Entailing construction of some bridges and flyovers, this project, with most part of it running on river banks, is said to be the largest of its kind  in the whole country.  The Karnataka Housing Board will defray the initial cost of survey etc.

So far so good. The project will certainly give a big boost to the city in tourism, business and living standards, with the MRPL petrochemical complex, SEZ etc. scheduled to set foot here very soon.

But, as we made a survey of public opinion here, several questions have been cropping up. Since this route is passing on the river banks in most part, will it clash with the CRZ and environmental regulations?

Will it be an eyesore of a concrete skeleton around the city, which has been blessed with a beautiful seaface from Kulur to Ullal and a lovely pony-tail-like stretch of sand from Kulur through Tannirbavi, Bengre, right up to Ullal bridge? Will it not offend the aesthetics of Mangalore? Will it not involve destruction of the precious mangrove growth on our river banks, felling of thousands of trees and razing of hundreds of existing structures and houses?

Many are of the opinion that it would be far safer and more economical to dilute the density of the city to the suburbs by building satellite townships and moving all major government offices to uptown areas.

The above-mentioned points have been raised by some serious-minded citizens.. Added to it is the forbidding cost and its likely escalation over the years of construction period.

Over to experts.

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Comment on this article

  • S Dsouza, Mangalore

    Thu, Sep 20 2007

    Nice to hear that Ring road is coming up , but at the same time lot of land in DK will have to be Acquired if projects like PCPIR(Petro chemicals and petrolium investment region) comes . These project come with many chemical companies which will destroy lots of greenery in DK.

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  • selma, Mangalore

    Sun, Aug 05 2007

    I am glad to know that. I belong to Kulur church.Will this road affect our church? Will the road run through MRPL border or Kulur border.can you please give a brief sketch of the border area?This might help all the people around. thank you very much

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  • K.Raghava Mayyak, Padil, Mangalore-7

    Sat, Jul 21 2007

    Ring road is beneficial to the floating poopulation - coming from outside and moving out. The prime need is to give attention to widening of the roads within the city. Previously City Improvement Trust and now Muda though bodies to take care of Cityplanning have made no plans at all and left no scope for widening city roads by permitting growth of high rise buildings on all roadsides thereby giving perennial discomfiture to road users.

    Roads are not in tune with city growth in terms of high rise building and thereby increased population. MG Road needed to be widened with 6-lanes Hampankatta-Falnir and Hampankatta-Balmatta roads should be a single 8-lane road , , removing the buildings in between. All other roads, even roads of residential places need be made at least twoways roads with midparapet so that u-turn of vehicles is not possible.

    But to think all this is only a nightmare. City-fathers went on issuing permits for highrise constructions on both roadsides thus making widening of roads impossible. This month itself there opened a posh commercial complex on the side of Bunts Hostel road{oppWoodlands hotel} This place is already uncontrollable and easy passing of vehicles suffers with bus stops on both sides. Added to this, is the said commercial complex ,users of which have to park vehicles on the roadside . Underground though provided ,houses shoppings, as is the case all over the city.

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  • b r bhat, mangalore, alape

    Sat, Jul 21 2007

    Good article. Thanks for furnishing the details. We hope the project will start soon.

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  • Avinash,

    Sat, Jul 21 2007

    Whats the use? Once you have the road, you will have more two wheelers, buses, more accidents, reckless driving, more pollution, the list is endless. What we need is the mass transportation. Our administration lacks vision. Once everything becomes chaotic, then they will think of mass transportation, like what they are doing in Bangalore.

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  • Max & Jessie Rasquinha, Mangalore /Houston, T x

    Fri, Jul 20 2007

    Lot of good hopes of progress in the horizon for Mangalore, our beloved home town. Our city fathers and our State fathers will have to change as time progresses, because the world is changing fast and faster. Good roadways will pave opportunity for good transportation and good communication. Each and every step taken for future progress has lot to do with the growth and focus on future economy. Our future focus on SEZ and our future focus on industrial development in and around Mangalore will bring in so many concrete ideas for development of roads, schools, hospitals and much more with a direct emphasis on education, health, environment that will benefit one and all the citizens of our hometown, our state and our country at large.

    While the population is growing each year let the flow of ideas flourish with our leaders so that all our dreams and plans may come true. Let us all therefore keep our mind and heart open for lot of positive thinking and help all our leaders to move forward with the time and opportunity ahead of us. May God help millions of people that need to upgrade their basic standard of life. The destiny of our future lies in the progress of mankind.

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