Delhi - Transportation Infrastructure



The Delhi Government is clearly focused on giving the national capital a world class feel and look by the time the Commonwealth Games is staged in Delhi in October 2010


“The prestige of the Commonwealth Games 2010 is driving the fast growth in infrastructure in Delhi”
—Chief Minister of Delhi Ms Sheila Dikshit

Delhi is shifting gears, and not just on its roads. There’s a new momentum, a welcome freshness to its resolve to look spiffier in time for the Commonwealth Games (CWG) to be held in the city in October 2010. Spearheading this momentum is Delhi’s Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit whose city secured the bid to host the prestigious event by defeating the bid of Hamilton, Canada by 46 votes to 22 in 2003.

Interwoven with Sheila Dikshit’s dreams of staging a grand CWG are the dreams of the younger segments in the city. The CWG for the youth will be that one event that shall realize several dreams. Just like what the Asian Games of 1982 had done to an entire generation. The inheritors of the infrastructure and the goodwill generated from the Games will be the young. This is Delhi’s second major opportunity for giving itself a huge facelift in nearly three decades and Dikshit is fully aware of its importance. “The city will get a new look and feel. There will be world class elements, like a large convention centre at Dwarka, new buildings aesthetically designed by Indian architects, renovated arenas, robotics and state-of-the art imported electronics.”
Sports authority of India
Expenditure Rs Crore
Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium 455
Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium 271
Dr S.P. Mukherjee Swimming Pool  145
Delhi Development Authority
Expenditure  Rs Crore
Commonwealth Games Village
Yamuna Sports Complex 
Siri Fort Sports Complex 
Saket Sports Complex 
Besides, of course, the city will sport a few new, and several renovated stadiums. Most venues will have comfortable lounges, and media centres. “The prestige of the event is driving the fast growth in infrastructure in Delhi,” says the articulate CM who is monitoring the preparations keenly.

The Commonwealth Games Village itself is being built by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) that is likely to get a budget in excess of Rs 630 crore to implement its projects. A DDA spokesperson who talked to INDIA EMPIRE specified that the DDA would adopt a private-public partnership module to go about its task. About 1,160 flats are likely to come up at the Games Village, enough to house around 8,000 athletes and officials from the 56 participating countries. During the Asian Games of 1982, the DDA had built 853 flats for 5,000 athletes, later those flats were disposed off, some commercially. For CWG too, DDA is likely to adopt the same method.
The village spread over 158.4 acres will be utilized for permanent residential purposes once the Games get over. The DDA is also looking to complete competition and practice venues at the Siri Fort Games Complex, Saket Sports Complex and at the Yamuna Sports Complex in disciplines such as badminton, squash, table tennis, squash, archery, swimming, tennis. Besides, there will be athletic tracks, indoor wrestling halls and weight training areas at the venues that the DDA will raise. Temporary structures will include a ceremonial plaza, village opera, food court, transport mall, and laundry area.

In an indirect way, the DDA is helping generate tourist revenue for the CWG by having auctioned 33 hotel plots. When complete these hotels will add 6,500 beds to Delhi’s existing hospitality infrastructure. Also, the DDA is helping raise the FAR and speeding up clearances for projects that require enormous digging.

While the DDA is focused primarily on the Games Village and sports complexes that it has been running for over a decade, it is the Sports Authority of India (SAI) that is tasked with the execution of the big infrastructure projects (please see chart on renovation action plan with costs). Says SAI’s chief administrator Sanjay Saraswat, “We are well on course to completing all our projects on time.”

Apart from the SAI and the DDA, the Delhi Government has appointed Ramesh Narayanswami, a former chief secretary, as a special advisor for the CWG. It is his job to monitor progress by different agencies and report to CM Dikshit. Fifty eight events will be held at various venues. Among them are the Siri Fort Games Complex, Yamuna Sports Complex, Karni Singh Stadium, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee complex at Talkatora that includes the boxing stadium, Thyagaraja Stadium, cycle velodrome, Indira Gandhi Stadium, shooting range at Khadarpur, Delhi University Grounds, and training venues like Chhatarsal Stadium, Ambedkar Stadium, and the J N Stadium lawns. The Delhi Government is also looking at 15 other mega projects in connection with the CWG. They include power projects, flyovers, malls, business and convention centres.

A scorching pace has been set by the Government of Delhi. It now remains to be seen how fast the implementing agencies are able to translate their commitments into results. An entire Delhi is waiting. And dreaming.
—Empire Bureau

June 2008

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