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No bidders yet for project to fence the Gateway of India

BMC officials claim it was because of the “specificity” of the project that no success has been achieved in the three rounds of tender process.

Written by Rohit Alok | Mumbai |
December 17, 2016 3:10:36 am
gateway of india, gateway of india fencing, gatewat fencing, gateway fencing project bidders, indian express The Gateway of India. File Photo

Four months after a project to set up a fence at the Gateway of India was approved by the coastal authority and the heritage committee, the Rs 30 lakh tender floated for the project is yet to find any bidders. BMC officials claim it was because of the “specificity” of the project that no success has been achieved in the three rounds of tender process.

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“Regarding the fencing project, we have sought all NOCs, however, tenders have not received any response. It is difficult to find a tender, as the project requires specific tender conditions like an architect who is acquainted with heritage structures,” said Kiran Dighavkar, assistant municipal commissioner (A-ward).

A foldable fencing of height of 6 feet mounted on coaster wheels is to be set up around the iconic landmark to secure it. According to minutes of a meeting held by the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority in August, the agency had approved building a movable fence to cordon off the site’s premises along Adam Street and PJ Ramchandani Marg and to set up a tensile fabric canopy at the entrance of the premises along Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Marg. The total length of the fencing is 100 meters.

The minutes also read that a canopy of tensile fabric would be set up at the entrance to provide cover for checking and frisking activity of the police. The tensile canopy on the steel frame will cover a horizontal area of 10m by 4 m.

“The fencing and canopy will provide controlled access to the premises and will also provide cover and protection for checking and frisking activity. Thus, it will help to strengthen the security arrangement. Further, the overall design of the fencing and canopy can be described as aimed at preserving the heritage importance of the premises,” read the minutes of the meeting held on August 8-11 earlier this year.

The only entry point will be near the Yacht Club, while the exit will be near the new wing of the Taj Mahal Hotel.

Meanwhile, the heritage committee raised objections regarding height and design of the fence, the entry-exit points and the pedestrian patterns. Members of the heritage committee are concerned that a stampede situation may arise from the current and proposed layouts.

In a meeting on November 19, the heritage committee suggested the MCGM to make modifications to the plans and revert to them on the next meeting on December 20. Dighavkar said the fence height has been brought down to five feet.

The Mumbai police had proposed the building of a fence around the Gateway of India in August 2013. Currently, barricades are set up by the police on the perimeter of Gateway of India and they have also installed a makeshift tent for screening visitors.

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