CP renovation misses another deadline

Connaught Place

Work to be complete by March 31, NDMC to announce new deadline in budget meeting today

After several missed deadlines, the Connaught Place renovation project is looking at a new date of completion — March 31. The renovation of city's oldest shopping destination was initially scheduled to be complete before the 2010 Commonwealth Games, hosted by the national capital.

After a hurried clean up and stay on work during the sporting event, the deadlines were repeatedly revised and missed. The last one was December 2012.

The announcement about the further delay and the new deadline is expected to be announced at the annual budget meeting of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), which is scheduled for Monday.

During its previous budget announcement, for year 2012-13, the NDMC had set December 31, 2012, as the deadline for the Connaught Place project.

But, the NDMC officials are confident this is the last missed deadline for the project as "most of the work is complete" and only shifting of services, like electricity and telephone cables, is remaining.

The plan included provision of heritage sensitive signages, engineering improvements of roads and enhancement of electricity, drainage and water facilities.

Several agencies like the NDMC, Engineers India Limited and Central Public Works Department are involved in the project. Apart from construction work, the project required coordination with the Delhi Traffic Police, which is responsible for smooth movement of traffic in the area.

At present, all seven radial roads of the area are open for traffic movement.

"Currently, development of parking spaces on both the sides of the radial roads is being done,'' a source said. While major construction work is over, the renovation of façade in parts of the shopping centre is left.

Earlier, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had expressed her displeasure at the delay in completion of the project.

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