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BIAL connectivity updates Novenmber 2007

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Newspapers have been reporting a lot of action on BIAL connectivity front. Some tidbits:

“The design of the trumpet interchange has been finalised in coordination with the NHAI to accommodate the expansion to eight lanes. The interchange work will not be delayed. Most of it will be ready for the airport opening date of March 30 and completed by July 2008,’’ said Albert Brunner, CEO, Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL).

The infrastructure task force (basically a body of concerned industrailists of the city) is supposed to have met today (Thursday), we should have more updates in newspapers tomorrow. But it seems:

In the long term, the task force is thinking of an express train service, a Peripheral Ring Road and an Express Highway Ring Road, sources said.

Last week, Livemint reported that:

BIAL will pick up an equity stake in a proposed elevated mass transit rail network to transfer passengers from the airport to the city, according to Albert Brunner.

Meanwhile, we have not heard more details of the plan DMRC submitted last month for this rail connection. No word on the estimated cost either.

TOI/ET reported that BMTC has ordered for 40 Volvo buses that will provide non-stop connectivity to BIAL from six spots within the city. The six spots were not mentioned.

There has been no update recently on the Outer Ring Road upgrades as was being suggested by some last month. No update on the status of NH207 upgrade to create a BIAL connection from the east side (Whitefield).


tsubba's picture

Focus on NH7

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Task force has focus on NH 7

Reshaping of existing roads was in focus as members of the task force constituted to address issues of connectivity to the upcoming international airport in Devanahalli met for the first time, on Thursday.

During the meeting, the task force identified core issues of concern and worked towards formulating short-term and long-term plans to address them, according to sources.

With the proposed 33.5-km elevated rail link still on paper and road projects including the Special State Highway from Outer Ring Road to Devanahalli yet to take off, the focus was brought back on NH 7, that is the only major connecting road. The airport is set to commence operations on March 30, 2008.

The task force comprises senior officials from various government departments and agencies, including the PWD, Infrastructure Development Department, BDA, BBMP, BMRDA and the police, apart from industry leaders.

Sources said the BBMP, represented by Commissioner S Subramanya, detailed short-term plans to make the nearly 40-km ride from the Central Business District to the new airport less tiresome.

BBMP plans
The BBMP is already working on a contingency plan, that covers innovations like readymade underpasses at choke points, in this connection. The first series of underpasses is expected to be ready by January, 2008.

Widening of roads between Vidhana Soudha and Hebbal and creation of more service roads have been brought to the table. The task force will also have streamlining of traffic from the city up to Hebbal as a priority task.

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"Zip" to Airport

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Zip To New Airport

** signal-free road between High Grounds police station and Hebbal flyover.
** five underpasses in the stretch.

Infrastructure secretary V P Baligar told TOI: "We will put in place a number of underpasses, which will be built from pre-cast RCC structures, at various bottlenecks to allow free flow of traffic."

The underpasses, each of which will take no more than two days to put up, will come at Windsor Manor junction, BDA junction, Cauvery junction, Sanjay Nagar junction and CBI junction. The estimated cost for each one is between Rs 60 lakh and Rs 1 crore. "It was stated at the meeting that while the underpasses are being constructed, the work will in no way disrupt the traffic flow," said Reguraj, chairman of CII, Karnataka, who was present at the meeting.

The BBMP, which will undertake the construction of these underpasses, will commence work on December 15, and has set a deadline of January 30, 2008.

Closer to the airport, the trumpet interchange that BIAL is working on — one leading from the direction of Hyderbad to the airport and the other leading from the airport towards Bangalore — is proposed to be finished before March 30, 2008, the opening date of the international airport. However, the main trumpet leading from the Bangalore side to the airport and from the airport to the Hyderabad side will only be completed by August 2008.

The public works department has undertaken the task to get six arterial roads leading to the airport ready before February next year. Some of these include SH 104 Bangalore-Nandi Road, Devanahalli to airport via Anneswara village. The NH4 to the airport and NH7 to the airport are also proposed to be improved.

Baligar said the second meeting of the task force will be either on Dec 17 or 18.


Cut it, fit it and shut it. This is BBMP’s new mantra to clear bottlenecks. Cutting down on money, time and traffic hassles, the BBMP is taking refuge in these new-age pre-cast boxes that can be fitted onto roads in no time. For the first time, BBMP has introduced a Malaysian technology, Elements, which is an RCC arch segment box and square box that can be fitted onto the road at a cost of just Rs 1 crore. The first stretch identified for the project is Bellary Road and work is proceeding in three casting yards — Okalipuram, Peenya and Hebbal — using machinery from Malaysia and Germany. While the cost of precast blocks is Rs 60 lakh, fixing it, constructing the ramp and road will cost Rs 40 lakh. BBMP has identified 26 bottlenecks for the project.

Excavating the earth takes a day. Laying concrete base will take another two. Next will be lowering the precast structure, which will take two days. Thirty interlocking blocks of 1 metre each, nailed to the ground with weld mesh, will avoid earth caving in. The embankments will be reinforced by concrete panelling. Finally, earth will be filled on top of the box and ramps will be put up.

Underpass will be 15-metre wide to allow two buses to pass simultaneously. It will be fitted with solar lighting, vents for rainwater and pedestrian walkway. The arch segment, which is unidirectional, will be used for 9-metre clearance and box element for 4.5 metre.
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Zip through - what happens to pedestrians

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I would like to see this new technology in action and if it is all that it promises to be. However the traffic lights were the only hope for pedestrians in this city of ours. I wonder how they will manage now. Yesterday, I went to the nehru planetarium with my boys. While I will write a separate post on that, I will focus on the drive from JP nagar to the planetarium and back in the following paragraphs. a. It took about 40 mins in the not so peak hour from my house to cover the 13 odd km to there. Just reaching 4th block from our apartments takes 20 mins!!! b. I observed that there has been no attempt at synchronizing traffic lights along JC Road. I stopped at Minerva, then at Siddaiah road, then at Shivaji,again at Town Hall, again at Unity buildings and one almighty mess at the Hudson church signal with everyone's vehicle pointing in different directions (and this next to Ulsoor Gate station). (For anyone who has been to Madras, check out Mount Road and how well the traffic lights have been synchronized). c. On the way back we wanted to visit the VITM (another write-up will come out on that). Made the bad mistake of coming down Queen's Road. Took the right turn to Kasturba road and realized I had to go down Mallya Road, Sampangi Tank Road and then back. Are our traffic police trying to help the oil companies?? This one-way madness has gone a bit too far! d. The drive back from the Museum - we went on MG Road, Brigade Road and Richmond Road. Traffic was surprising disciplined with lower levels of honking than usual (wonder why). e. Double road - they seem to have done patchwork repairs. Traffic was smooth and we made it from Richmond Town (where we visited my mother-in-law) to JP Nagar 7th Phase in about 35 mins. The Ashoka Pillar road is one smooth drive and there almost never is chaos. Maybe the lane markings do make a difference. The traffic police spoke a lot recently about some improvements to the traffic lights. But really don't know what they have done. Waiting at Vellara junction to take a right turn to Richmond Road - we had a countdown of 180seconds at 3:30 p.m. They need to figure out which corridors to synchronize. And whether morning needs a different pattern vs. evenings. Thanks, Srivathsa

Drive safe.  It is not just the car maker which can recall its product.

s_yajaman's picture

New(?) underpass technology - one more thing

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If this is as miraculous as what BBMP is making it out to be, why not debottleneck critical areas of the ORR and Airport Road as well using this rather than building huge flyovers. I have my scepticism about this, but will keep an open mind till I see this in action. Srivathsa

Drive safe.  It is not just the car maker which can recall its product.

blrsri's picture

how safe??

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Yes, it sounds the perfect panacea..but question remains on the stability part of it. Load variations is another thing..LMV's/Busses could be fine for vehicles moving above the underpass..but what about the loaded trucks with axle weight on the higher side..we will need restrictions for such vehicles(OMR issue?)! The last thing anyone wants is the undepass caving in! As the BDA says, this is a pilot and the same will be replicated around other junctions/roads in Blr. Also pedestrian underpasses are planned this way too!
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sri make a post on this too.
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RCC Underpass (Pic)

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72 hr underpass
An underpass built using RC pre-cast box technology in Bangalore. (DH photo)

The BBMP has proposed construction of road underpasses using RC pre-cast box technology to put in place underpasses within a time frame as less as 72 hours. This, BBMP says is a short term solution to ease traffic congestion at various junctions/intersections.

Demonstrating models of the pre-cast structures, Dr S Subramanya, Commissioner, BBMP, said keeping in mind the opening of the international airport on March 30, it is sought to enable signal-free travel.

“We plan to begin putting in place, the first pre-fabricated structure at the Balabrooie junction (High Grounds Police Station) connecting the Hebbal flyover from December 15 and complete the entire exercise by March 2008.

Two path-breaking technologies, ‘Arch Segment Technology and Segmented Element Technology would be used,” Dr Subramanya said. The BBMP Commissioner added that cost of the project is also considerably lesser than the conventional method, where construction of an underpass could touch Rs 25 crore, while the new technology could cost less than a crore per junction. BBMP Executive Engineer (Special Sub-ways) Vishwanath said construction of the seven underpasses will begin from December 15.

There will be minor disruption in traffic during construction of each of the underpasses that is expected to be completed between 48-72 hours as the entire structure is pre-cast and brought to the site for installation.“We have started survey work at 17 other junctions in the city for more underpasses at a later stage,” Vishwanath added.

B B M P ’ S P L A N S
Junctions identified for construction of underpass by BBMP
* CBI junction, Bellary Road
* Sanjaynagar junction, Bellary Road
* Kaveri junction, Bellary Road
* Windsor Manor junction, Ramana Maharshi Road
* BDA office junction
* Anandnagar Road junction, Bellary Road
* Hebbal police station junction, Bellary Road
* Cunningham Road junction, Ramana Maharshi Road
* Maharani’s College junction
* K R Circle junction
* RPC layout junction, Chord Road
Two phases of the proposed pre-cast road underpass
* Minsk Square to Mekhri Circle
* Mekhri Circle to Hebbal fly-over
Source DH epaper Dec,01, 2007
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Trp X, IInd Runway ...

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Trumpet Exchange, Second Runway & Airports Across The State

Trumpet Exchange

Baligar said work on the trumpet interchange that provides access to the airport from NH 7 has been hit again after Girias Investment Private Ltd — which owns a part of the land that has been earmarked for the interchange — has now approached the Supreme Court. Only two loops in the interchange are expected to be ready when the airport starts operations on March 30, 2008.

Second Runway
The Bangalore International Airport Limited is also planning to create a second runway in Greenfield Airport.

Planned as part of the airport’s third expansion during 2013-14, the second runway will help the airport touch a capacity of 40 million passengers per year. Baligar said with the present runway, the airport can handle up to 20 million passengers a year.

As per the original schedule, the second runway was planned for the airport’s final phase (2030 and ahead).

The new runway will be built south of the existing 4-km runway. However, the proposal is yet to be cleared by the Union Defence Ministry that is reviewing the potential air traffic congestion (the Indian Air Force base in Yelahanka is only a few kilometres away).

The IDD is organising training sessions to familiarise officials from various government departments with the concept of Public Private Partnership.

The first batch, of 30 officials, was trained during sessions on November 15 and 16, Baligar said during an interactive meeting organised by the Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry. The next sessions will be held on December 16 and 17.

Swearing by the PPP mantra, Baligar said expansion of airports in Mangalore, Belgaum, Hubli and Bidar, apart from new airports in Hassan, Gulbarga and Shimoga was in line with the government initiative to ensure better air connectivity across the State.

He said the State would have to prioritise “credible and bankable” projects to reap in best returns from the PPP model.

Naveen's picture

PreFab Underpasses to the rescue !

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Hi All ! So, BBMP seems to have found a solution to ease the chaos & junction/signal delays with these pre-cast arches that can be positioned quickly. Wonder how it was'nt found till now - they could have started erecting these much earlier & made quick progress all around the city as costs are low /affordable & the job can be done very fast. This seems to be the perfect answer for our situation ! I think there is a limitation for the width due to weight - it has only a single lane & may not be suitable everywhere as mutiple arches may need to be put up on mutiple lane roads. The picture in TOI today shows the plan for KR circle - looks very good & if such ideas are used at Hudson circle, corporation & in front of town hall - actually at almost all such junctions, traffic may be streamlined & road rage may be somewhat controlled as one's vehicle will be on the move most of the time !
s_yajaman's picture

Better late than never

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So the BBMP pulled a rabbit out of its hat at the very last minute. Too early to say anything, but if the task force (comprising smart people) seems to have reviewed and okayed it, it might be a decent solution. Huge cost savings. I also read that it has a load bearing capacity of 120 tonnes. So chances of failure seem low. Instead of spending Rs.850 crores on the expressway they might as well spend 10% of that money in debottlenecking the ORR. The fact that these are single lane only could be a blessing as arches could serve as lane separators at the junctions. Half the chaos here is because people are in each others way and traffic moves really slowly when the light turns green. I hope they turn their attention to the ORR next and then critical junctions within the city. They need to identify 4-6 km stretches and debottleneck as a system and not individual junctions (not the usual bottleneck moving projects). I can think of a few along airport road till ITPL (Lower Agaram, Battle tank, Domlur, Manipal, Wind Tunnel road, HAL, Brookfields junction). Keeping my fingers crossed. It sounds too good to be true. Srivathsa

Drive safe.  It is not just the car maker which can recall its product.

blrsri's picture

15 mts wide

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The news reports say that the width is 15 mts but the demonstrated one is just enough for a bus..hope increase in width will still hold a battle tank moving over it! Also, this is a good solution for a criss-cross road however the problem still remains to be addressed as to how we get the join ramps work! I can imagine the cables and pipes that will come in the way..most of the underpass/flyover works in bangalore are delayed not cos of the technology but more because of the clearences from the various agencies that use the road.,. It seems railways has been using the precast tech since a long time..what were we doing and what are they doing now about the benniganahalli RUB?? And..and..underpass reuse did someone say?? sounds familiar for a city where code re-use is almost a household term! :P he..he..he
blrsri's picture

any updates?

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Request any updates on our glorified underpasses.. Has any work happened on-site at all? The last I heard was in TOI where they said they may not be quick-fix after all! Is the plan to get it ready by march still on the cards? comment guidelines

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