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Book mall in publishing hub

The Capital will soon get its first book mall where reading enthusiasts and those in the book business will get one-roof solution for all their reading needs on Ansari road Daryaganj.
Hindustan Times | By Neelam Pandey Neelam Pandey, New Delhi
UPDATED ON APR 04, 2008 01:32 AM IST

Ansari road in Daryaganj has always been associated with book publishing. But a lot is going to change in the area and for the better.

The Capital would soon get its first book mall where reading enthusiasts and those in the book business will get one-roof solution for all their reading needs. And what better location than Ansari Road, from where at least 80 per cent of India's book publishers operates.

The 12-storied four-tower mall would come up at 5, Ansari Road, on a 10,000 square-metre plot. Named Delhi Heritage Centre, the mall will have two towers with publishing activities with a common bookstore, while the other two towers will have institutions of art, culture, education and urban administration.

For easy access to desired subject, cataloguing would be done according to subject and not the publisher. The towers would also have museums and guesthouses.

The MCD has come with the ambitious project to re-organise nearly 600 publishers, publishing houses and related activities at one place which are scattered at present.“We have come up with a concept which will provide Delhi a common book store with subject-wise listing of books of all publishers at one place. We would also have restaurants, auditorium, among other things. A copy of the project has been sent to the Municipal Commissioner and Mayor Arti Mehra. We are also holding talks with the Delhi government and the DDA regarding the project,” said a senior MCD official.Publishers at Daryagnaj have also shown a keen interest in the project.

“A mall in the area would not only help book lovers but also publishers. At present the area is so crowded that many book lovers avoid it,” said RK Mehra, Chief Executive Officer, Rupa and Company.

Traffic congestion is a common phenomenon in the area. The civic body would be making provisions for underground parking with a capacity of 1,000 cars in the mall.

Out of this, one level of parking for 500 cars would be earmarked for the residents. Two underground parking for visitors would come up at Ambedkar Stadium and another one at Ring Road.

“We are quite happy with the project as it would lead to healthy competition among the publishers. The quality of publishing would improve. According to the plan, a museum
showcasing the history and growth of the city and the industry would also come up,” said Sukumar Das, Managing Director of UBS Publishing and Distribution Private Limited.“The project is quite interesting and it should take off soon as it would be good for publishers, wholesalers, retailers and the customers as well,” said Vijay Ahuja, Proprietor of Delhi Book Store.

“The book mall will have separate space for offices of the book publishers in Daryaganj and also of all those located all over the country. The publishers, editors, translators, copywriters, designers, DTP operators associated with publishing will also be located in the same centre,” added an MCD official.

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