Govt narrows on five firms for the next phase of the Central Vista redevelopment project

According to officials aware of the development, the five firms — Tata Projects Limited, Shapoorji Pallonji Group, ITD Cementation, NCC limited and PSP Projects limited — submitted their technical bids on Monday.
The second phase of the project will include the demolition of dozens of office buildings.(Special arrangement with HT)
The second phase of the project will include the demolition of dozens of office buildings.(Special arrangement with HT)
Updated on Dec 15, 2020 07:03 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByAnisha Dutta

The Centre has narrowed down on five construction firms for the next phase of the Central Vista redevelopment project— the redevelopment and restructuring of the Central Vista Avenue, which includes the majority of the Rajpath stretch and the row of government offices that are parallel to it, senior officials said.

According to officials aware of the development, the five firms — Tata Projects Limited, Shapoorji Pallonji Group, ITD Cementation, NCC limited and PSP Projects limited — submitted their technical bids on Monday.

“The technical bids will now be evaluated. After this, those who qualify will place their financial bids in a few days,” said a senior official requesting anonymity. “Seven bidders had participated in the pre-bidding meeting for the project held in November,” the official added.

Tata Projects Limited has also been tasked with the construction of the new Parliament complex after it emerged as the lower bidder for the tender with a bid of Rs 861.90 crore when financial bids for the project opened on September 16, and was awarded the contract to construct the building on September 29.

When contacted by HT a spokesperson for the firm declined to comment.

The nodal agency for the project; the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) has also revised the estimated cost for the project from 463 crore to 502 crore, according to the modified tender document reviewed by HT.

The tender for the redevelopment of the Central Vista avenue also mandates the firms to maintain it for five years from completion, and requires that the project be complete within 300 days. Work will also need to be carried out in patches in order to minimise the portion of the avenue that is cordoned off at any given time, according to the tender floated in November.

This phase will also require contractors to install air purifiers and keep construction noise under preset thresholds, HT had reported on November 9.

“The contractor may have to execute the work in three shifts with large manpower of workers, supervisors and professional engineers,” the tender document said.

Whichever firm is selected, it will be responsible for comprehensive maintenance and operation for a period of 60 months after completion of construction.

The second phase of the project will include the demolition of dozens of office buildings.

Broadly, the plan includes razing buildings such as Shastri Bhawan, Udyog Bhawan and Krishi Bhawan that house important government ministries to build a common secretariat for roughly 70,000 central government employees who are currently located across 30 buildings.

According to the revised cost estimates: Rs372.9 crore will be for the ‘Civil Work & Horticulture Component’, Rs 113.7 crore for the ‘Electrical & Mechanical component’ and Rs15.51 crore for ‘Operation & Maintenance’ for five years. “This estimate, however, is given merely as a rough guide,” according to the tender document.

The plan, being handled by the Union ministry of housing and urban affairs, involves having a new Parliament building in place by India’s 75th Independence Day in 2022, while the entire project is slated to be finished by 2024.

“The work is to be carried out strictly within 10 months i.e. the period available between two Republic Day Celebrations i.e. RDC 2021 & 2022. There is no scope of failure in completing the project by November, 2021 after starting the work in Feb, 2021… The work is to be completed within a short period of 10 months. This condition has been incorporated to check the financial strength as well as capability to mobilize resources required for a work of this magnitude,” CPWD had noted in a pre-bidding meeting held in November according to minutes of the meeting reviewed by HT.

The work on the second phase of the project comes at a time when the apex court last week had directed the Centre to immediately stop all construction and ancillary activities in the historically significant Central Vista area of New Delhi where a new Parliament, Central Secretariat and union ministries’ offices are planned to be built. The Supreme Court, had however, allowed the government to proceed with the foundation stone laying ceremony on December 10, and procedural paperwork stating that there cannot be alterations to the site.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the new Parliament House on Thursday, describing the event as a milestone in India’s democratic history and asserting that the building will become the symbol of a 21st century nation and Aatmanirbhar Bharat, or self-reliant India.

In the ambitious Central Vista project the new Parliament complex, has an earlier deadline of 2022 under the Central Vista redevelopment plan, and will be among the first plans to be finalised.

The redevelopment will also see shifting of the Prime Minister and the Vice President’s residence, North and South Block turning into a museum as well as new administrative offices with an underground metro on either side of the avenue.

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Monday, December 06, 2021