The Capital's 'dirty roads' may soon be transformed with the government seriously considering the proposal of a leading European firm to provide 'street furniture'. What's more, the company offered to charge nothing for providing the world class streetscape in return for advertising rights on one kind of furniture - bus stops.
While this street furniture is being considered for the entire city, the Delhi government had a special presentation made before Union science minister Kapil Sibal on Monday evening as this arrangement is also possible in his parliamentary constituency, Chandni Chowk.
"The company, JCDecaux, is offering to construct aesthetic bus stops and other road furniture like benches and public utilities.
They want advertising rights for bus stops in turn for making and even maintaining them. We are seriously considering this proposal for the city. Delhi has to be given an overall facelift before the Commonwealth Games,"Delhi's urban development minister A K Walia said.
He said the government and Sibal were very keen on developing Chandni Chowk for night tourism. "There are some designs for toilets, stalls and benches which will be considered for Chandi Chowk. All this will be shown to Sibal. NDMC has already asked them to build bus stops,"said Walia.
NDMC chairperson Sindhushree Khullar said the firm was successful in an international competitive bid done for the civic agency by Rites. "JCDecaux will construct 197 bus stops in our area. They will construct the stops, maintain them and pay NDMC,"she said.
Plans to develop Janpath and Baba Kharak Singh Marg as "world class"streets in Delhi by providing the best available street furniture are also in the pipeline.
Similarly, the Union urban development ministry had asked Delhi's civic agencies to take special care of the three main roads used for commuting between the city and the airport.
These roads included Shanti Path, Sardar Patel Marg and Aurobindo Marg. While Shanti Path's much delayed facelift was hastened by US President George Bush's visit earlier this year, the other two roads are still competing for attention.
"The government is yet to get its act together on preparing Delhi as a world class city. Only plans are being made but their implementation is still awaited. At a time when the city is fighting for basic things like water and power, there's certainly an uphill task ahead for the city,"admitted a senior official.
Curtisy : Times of India