For effective disposal of solid waste, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has planned to increase the number of hook loader Lorries (mechanized vehicles). At present, the civic body has six mechanized vehicles. The urban body, which had made a budgetary provision of Rs 26 crore for solid waste management and treatment in 2012-13, recently increased it to Rs 45 crore for the ensuing financial year.
Private players will provide the mechanized vehicles for transportation of wastes as per the condition mentioned in the bid documents, said BMC commissioner Sanjib Kumar Mishra.
"With the increase in budget, we will be focusing strictly on waste management, which will include drain de-siltation, bush cutting, transportation, bulk garbage collection from hospitals, nursing homes and hotels," said the commissioner. He said the civic body has 30 big bins for waste collection.
"We are also going to introduce some new norms in the payment to the contractors for transporting the garbage. We will pay them on the basis of tonnage. Earlier, we were paying them on the basis of per trip of garbage. There will be two computerized weighbridges," the commissioner said. He said around Rs 16 crore would be spent annually to transport solid waste from transfer stations to the dumping yard at Bhuasuni.
Sources said even after delimitation of wards, the present 60 wards will be taken as sanitation wards. "We won't tinker with sanitation jurisdiction even though there are more than 60 wards after delimitation. The new wards will come under the same sanitation jurisdiction," Mishra added.
Sources said for mechanized sweeping, the corporation will spend about Rs 7.5 crore. At present, only one sweeping machine is operating in the city. There are proposals to privatize some more wards and press into service more mechanized sweeping machines also.Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation on ward makeover spree
Under fire for potholed roads and overflowing drains, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has embarked upon a massive infrastructure makeover in all the 60 wards of the city. An estimated Rs 48 crore would be spent to improve the road and drain infrastructure this fiscal.
"The massive repair and renovation of roads and drains in all wards would be completed by March. The work started in September," BMC commissioner Sanjib Kumar Mishra said. "Nearly Rs 80 lakh would be spent in each ward," Mr. Mishra added. He said the whopping amount would be spent to repair 125 km stretch of roads and 25 km of drains in different wards.
"Of the proposed 125-km roads, contractors have so far completed around 25 km work. Similarly, contractors have made progress in nearly five-km drains," BMC city engineer T B K Shroff said. Sources said nearly 1,400 km roads and 700 km drains come under the purview of BMC.
Citizens urged the civic body to ensure quality of work. "We understand that the corporation kick-started the belated work keeping in mind the forthcoming election to the urban local bodies. Quality of work should be given top priority," said Anuradha Mohanty of Satya Nagar.
Significantly, the state government recently handed over a few roads of different urban local bodies (ULB) to the works department for development and maintenance. In the first phase, the works department will look after 400 km roads in all 103 ULBs in Odisha. Out of the 400 km, the works department will construct roads of 30 km length each in all the three municipal corporations of Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Berhampur.
"Each municipal corporation has been asked to identify the 30km length that will be handed over to the works department," Mishra said. The state housing and urban development department (H&UD) would provide funds to the works department for the road projects.
The reason of transferring the ULB roads to works department is attributed to funds crunch and procedural wrangling of civic bodies. "Most of the ULBs are cash-strapped. Unlike works department, the road projects of ULBs pass through several procedural hurdles, leading to delay in execution," an H&UD officer said.Street vendors to be rehabilitated
As many as 5,000 street vendors in the city will be rehabilitated at vending zones located in different places of the city, said mayor Anant Narayan Jena at a function, organized to mark National Roadside Vendors' Day, here on Sunday.
"Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation has already constituted town vending committee (TVC), which will help rehabilitate the vendors. Under this rehabilitation process, differently-able persons and women will also be taken care of. They will also be given ID proof," said the mayor. The demolished shoe-vending zones at Rajmahal square will be relocated, added the mayor.
The vendors' association, however, demanded formation of a board for the two lakh street vendors in the state. "If a vendors' board is constituted, many welfare activities can be taken up," said association president Pratap Sahu.
There are nearly 22,000 street vendors in the city, out of which only 2,600 vendors were rehabilitated earlier. Representatives of 43 vending zones participated in the function.Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation hikes waste management budget
The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has proposed to increase budgetary allocation for solid waste management in the city for 2013-14, the corporation's draft budget said.
The draft budget, involving nearly Rs 473 crore receipt and Rs 425.89 crore expenditure, was placed in the corporation meeting on Monday. BMC's budget for the 2012-13 fiscal stood at nearly Rs 452 crore.
While the civic body had made budgetary provision of nearly Rs 26 crore for solid waste management and treatment in 2012-13, it now plans to increase it to nearly Rs 45 crore for the ensuing financial year. "We expect that around Rs 16 crore would be spend annually to transport solid waste from the transfer station at Sainik School to Bhuasuni dumping yard," BMC commissioner Sanjib Kumar Mishra said.
For the first time, the corporation has proposed budgetary provision of Rs 7.5 crore for mechanized street sweeping, sources said. At present, only one sweeping machine is being used in the city. There are proposals to privatize some more wards and press into service mechanized sweeping machines.
The corporation has proposed allocation of nearly Rs 121.52 crore to improve roads, drainage system and streetlights. BMC expects to collect tax revenue amounting to Rs 45 crore from different sources, including holding. Similarly, it hopes to earn nearly Rs 100 crore by selling properties, including shops in malls. The corporation aims to collect around Rs 18.63 crore as fees and user charges.Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation buckles up to clear hoarding clutter
Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has started turning the heat on businessmen for evading tax and cluttering the city skyline with illegal hoardings.
The corporation pulled down five giant unauthorized hoardings from different places in the city in the past two days. Besides, at least Rs 40,000 was collected from shops that have been evading license fee for putting up hoardings over their establishments.
"The drive will continue till the skyline is cleared of illegal hoardings and banners," said BMC commissioner Sanjib Kumar Mishra. "Notices have also been served to several advertising agencies, which have not cleared their dues. We are incurring losses worth lakhs of rupees due to illegal hoardings," Mishra said.
The BMC had generated nearly Rs 10 crore, 85 lakh revenue from trade licenses and advertisements in 2011-12. It has collected around Rs 5 crore so far in 2012-13. The civic body has permitted around 40 advertising agencies to install hoardings on private land. Besides, Team Ad Mark, an advertising agency has been allowed advertisement right over government land in BMC area for three years for a bid amount of Rs 5.40 crore with 20% enhancement every year. The agency has been asked to pay Rs 45 lakh per month in the first year, Rs 54 lakh and Rs 64.8 lakh in the second and third year respectively.
"Since the BMC collects money for billboards as per size, some corrupt BMC officials are helping illegal advertising agencies to conceal the size of the hoardings to evade fees," said a corporator.
The BMC, which has no full proof record of the number of authorized hoardings in the city, is in the process of creating a database of the same. The computerized compilation will record the details of hoardings and their agencies. The size of the hoardings and their locations will also be recorded.
There is also a proposal to take the help of GIS (geographic information system) to control hoarding management in the city. "We can monitor through images captured by satellites so that advertising agencies do not cheat us. Photographs generated through high-resolution satellite images will be fed into computers to know the exact size and location of the hoardings. After the images are obtained, we can do physical inspection to compare the data," said another BMC officer.
According to sources, there are much more hoardings in the city than the corporation had approved. Though BMC has declared major thoroughfares near Raj Bhawan, AG Square, Rabindra Mandap, 120 Battalion, Master Canteen and PMG square as 'no hoarding zones', billboards continue to come up at these places.BMC to clear signboard clutter
In a bid to rid the city of visual pollution posed by haphazard mounting of outdoor signboards and way boards indicating the direction of shops, markets and shopping complexes, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) is planning to bring about a regulation to remove the messy signboards and to put up well-designed uniform way boards.
"The new regulation will help to clean up the mess created by ugly way boards put up here and there by shop owners without any planning. We will recommend uniform size boards to be put up at select locations," said BMC commissioner Sanjib Mishra.
"Shop owners pay us a certain fee to put up the boards. The new rules may fetch us less revenue as we will remove many of the boards, but we are committed to maintain the beauty of the city," the commissioner said.
Urban planner Piyush Rout said it is a good initiative and many cities have already implemented it. "The city civic body needs to overhaul sign boards to make the capital city more attractive. At present the street way boards (direction boards) are too cluttered. It takes a while for strangers to figure out hundreds of different signboards pointing in different directions," said Rout.
He said the boards should be designed in such a manner that information about 20 shops would be contained in one board, which should be of T shape. "The civic body can also go for designer, digitized way boards, as is being done in many cities. The BMC can also generate revenue from it," Rout said.Switches to check lighting of street lamps
To prevent streetlights from glowing during the day, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to install timer devices to switch on and put off the lights at sunset and sunrise respectively.
"Streetlight timer is ideal for saving electricity. It can work automatically. The device has micro-control based time switches, which is used to switch on and off various electronic devices, including street lamps," said BMC commissioner Sanjib Kumar Mishra. The timers will be fixed in automated junction boxes. "We have installed the devices at some places on a pilot basis. The system is doing well," Mishra said.
The corporation would buy 20,000 timers. The move is part of the energy saving measures as mentioned in the detailed project report, prepared by International Finance Corporation (IFC), a lending arm of the World Bank. The state government recently engaged IFC as transaction advisor to provide technical know-how for improving streetlight facility in the capital city.
To slash electricity bills, the civic body is also planning to adopt a technology that can dim streetlights during dusk and dawn. "We need less light during dusk and dawn. To control the flow of electricity to the street lamps, the dimmer machines will come handy," Mishra said.
Every day, the BMC receives a flurry of complaints relating to poor street-lighting facility in different wards. In many areas, lights are not switched on long after dark.
At present, there are around 30,000 streetlights in the city. BMC foots the electricity bills of around Rs 5 crore in a year and another nearly Rs one crore towards maintenance. The energy saving measures prepared by IFC may cut down the civic body's electricity expenses by Rs 2 crore. "We have submitted the DPR of IFC to housing and urban development department for vetting. After getting the final nod, we will float tender to replace the existing light poles and install timers," the city municipal commissioner said.Tricolour to fly high in capital Bhubaneswar soon
If everything goes as per plan, then the Tricolour in the capital will be found fluttering at a height, which will be visible from 50-km distance.
Called high-mast National Flag, similar to that in Kerala and Drass sub-sector at Kargil, it will be installed by Flag Foundation of India (FFI). Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC), which mooted the plan recently, is waiting for approval of housing and urban development (H&UD) department to launch the project.
The FFI, which was set up as a registered society in 2002 under society registration Act 1986, will conduct a survey in the city for selecting a location, where the poll will be installed to put up the Tricolour. The BMC has sent a mail to K V Singh, chief executive of FFI, which has expressed its willingness to send a team to conduct the survey.
"The FFI team will come soon to conduct a survey to select a location to install the poll. The team will mainly check blowing of wind and its velocity. It will also check whether the flag will be visible from 50-km distance," said BMC commissioner Sanjib Mishra.
He said the one installed at Drass sub-sector is visible from a distance of 150 km.
"The Drass sub-sector flag weighs about 15 kg and its length is 37 ft and width 25 ft. The poll height is about 101 ft. However, the height of Kerala flag will be highest as it is proposed to be kept at a height of 206 ft," said the commissioner. He said beams of lights would be focused on the flag from high-mast lights for better viewing at night.
"The height, length and width of the flag and the poll to be installed in Bhubaneswar are yet to be decided. It will be an added tourist attraction," he added.Cops told to vacate Unit-I quarters
The state government has asked city police to vacate 11 quarters allotted to cops in Unit I at the earliest. These would be razed for the proposed multi-storey market complex to be built by Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) in the locality.
Deputy Director of estate (general administration) S Panda on January 10 wrote to Deputy Commissioner of police to take steps to vacate these quarters near the Rajdhani Haat, city's largest daily market.
Government sources said along with these 11, total 43 government houses will be demolished to facilitate renovation of the market, established in 1958. The proposal was first mooted in 2010. It is the largest vegetable market in the city and witnesses an average of over 5,000 footfalls daily.
The general administration department has already allotted alternative accommodation to government employees who are currently staying in these houses. A senior government officer said the allotters have been served notice and if they fail to vacate the houses within the stipulated time period, the government will evict them.
"Soon after the houses are vacated, BMC will start work on the Rs 72-crore market complex. It will be a model market in the entire state," Mayor Anant Narayan Jena said.