Transport Nagar in neutral mode

The proposed Transport Nagar at Beldihia, about 10 km from the city, is moving at a snail’s pace. While the spade work for the project began five years ago, it may take another two years for its completion.

Sources said given the traffic pressure in the thickly populated residential areas due to bulk commercial activities, the local administration led by the then ADM Krishan Kumar in 2007 had conceptualised the project. All the transport-related activities along with the wholesale business were to be shifted to Beldihia alongside the busy Rourkela-Sambalpur State Highway 10. The idea was to ease traffic pressure by keeping commercial vehicles out of the city limits. With Krishan Kumar joining as Sundargarh Collector, the project received a further push as land issues were sorted out and boundary construction over 25 acres given a go ahead. However, Kumar’s transfer in July 2008 saw the project coming to an abrupt halt. Official sources said the project had been envisaged in the PPP mode with an estimated cost of ` 25 crore. Amid slow progress, it has finally been decided that the land would stay under the Rourkela Development Authority (RDA) which would also execute the project.

RDA Chairman Dayanidhi Kisan admitted that the project had become a necessity in the changing scenario. He, however, blamed the delay on lack of political will. It is alleged that businessmen funding politicians are reluctant to shift from the wholesale markets along the Rourkela Main Road, Daily Market and Plant Site.

District Collector Rupa Roshan Sahu said decks had been cleared for the project with RDA at the helm of affairs and hoped for its early completion.

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