Parking worth ₹42 lakh to come up on ‘enemy property’ in Nainital after Centre’s permission
The district magistrate further informed that the Metropole parking lot will be developed as a hi-tech parking area.Updated: Aug 20, 2020, 09:33 IST
The parking woes of Uttarakhand’s scenic Nainital hill station are likely to end soon as a parking facility is set to come up worth Rs 42 lakhs on “enemy property” land after the Central government gave in-principle permission for the project.
Savin Bansal, district magistrate for Nainital district said, “We all know how big a problem traffic congestion is for Nainital town, especially during the peak tourist season when thousands of cars enter the city in a single day. To solve this problem, we had written to the Centre seeking permission to use the land of Metropole Hotel, which is an enemy property. The Central government approved our proposal in November last year and an amount of Rs 42 lakhs has been released recently for the project from the district plan.”
Bansal said Central government has given in-principle approval up to March 2021, however, formal approval for using the land as a parking facility needs to be taken every year from the Office of the Custodian of Enemy Property for India.
According to the letter of the Central government sent to Nainital DM in November last year, the ownership of the property will remain with the Custodian of Enemy Property for India under union home ministry. Ninety percent of the income from the parking lot will be deposited in the account of the Custodian of Enemy Property (the account will be opened by the district administration), and rest 10 percent will be spent on the maintenance of the parking lot, the letter states.
The district magistrate further informed that the Metropole parking lot will be developed as a hi-tech parking area, equipped with the facility of zoom-in-zoom-out barrier, CCTV cameras, beautification of the parking lot, systematic evacuation and entrance as well as separate toilets for women and men.
The district magistrate added that the beautification work, like the construction of a boundary wall, restrooms, small eateries, will start for the convenience of the public. The property is situated in the Nainital town itself and after proper development, it will have a capacity of parking around 250-300 cars, informed the district magistrate.
The amount has been sanctioned from the district plan to the public works department for levelling the land, construction of proper drainage, setting up a wire fencing and construction of security wall in the Metropole campus.
Being a major tourist spot in Uttarakhand, the hill town of Nainital welcomes around 15,000-20,000 tourists during the peak summer season, leading to the repeated choking of the road approaching the small Himalayan hill station, where open land is hardly available.
In May 2019, three to four-kilometre-long traffic jams were witnessed on the roads towards Nainital, especially on weekends and holidays. The authorities were finding it difficult to manage the traffic even as they regularly stopped the vehicles on the outskirts of Nainital on three approach roads - Kaladungi, Bhowali and Haldwani- when parking of around 2,000 vehicles inside Nainital got full.
In 2018, the district police had put ‘Nainital Houseful’ flexi-banners on the approach roads to Nainital given the unprecedented tourist influx.