Work on refurbishment of three prime market spaces in south Delhi, including Nehru Place, is likely to begin soon as the area’s civic body has handed over their upkeep to the Delhi Development Authority. The commercial centres to be renovated under the plan– Nehru Place, Bhikaji Cama Place and Basant Lok Market—-are very old markets, and over the years have become city’s landmarks.
“The South Delhi Municipal Corporation has handed over the areas to us and work is likely to begin soon. The Union Urban Development Ministry has given in-principle approval for all three projects and the DDA has also got the no-objection certificate from the corporation,” a senior DDA official told PTI. As part of the refurbishment, the DDA will repair facade of buildings, develop piazzas, renovate pavements, fix toilets and build new ones and build pedestrian pathways.
Nehru Place is one of the busiest markets in the national capital. The location of an eponymous metro station in its vicinity also contributes to its increasing footfall. “The SDMC is not in a position to maintain them, so they have handed them over to us. These markets in a way also are the face of our urban spaces.
“And, even foreign visitors go there, so, they need refurbishment. So, whether the civic body does it or the DDA does it, doesn’t matter. We should project a good image,” he added.
Once the work in Nehru Place is finalised, the DDA will start work at Bhikaji Cama and Basant Lok. Redevelopment of Basant Lok Market has also been under consideration for a long time and traders have been running from pillar to post to get the work done.
Sources said about Rs 80 crore has been allocated for the three projects, with Rs 55 crore for Nehru Place renovation.
“There are 11 district commercial centres run under the DDA. Another one is Peeraghadi will come up. After these three markets, we will also renovate other market spaces as well,” the official said.
Bhikaji Cama Place, located on the Ring Road, houses corporate offices and a big market adjoining it. Basant Lok Market in Vasant Vihar is one of the oldest markets in Delhi, known for its restaurants, and also receives a big footfall.