Systematic development to make Belgaum a model eco city

Dear Belgaumites:

Bella Vista Belagavi

Off late we all are seeing some activity taking shape for the development of Belgaum, after years of effort by our people to convince the State Government to pay much needed attention to the overall development of Belgaum has yielded some results. You all must be aware that Urban infrastructure in Belgaum is taking shape and we are in the initial stage of this urban revolution that is going to change the face of this city and region. The State government has been releasing funds for development and Mr.B S Yedurappa, the CM of Karnataka has assured 100 crores of funds for the Urban development of Belgaum.

We have exceeded a population of 700,000 which helps us to automatically qualify for JNNURM fund (Jawaharlal Nehru Nation Urban Renewal Mission) which is a central Government fund from Ministry of Urban Development. This fund helps cities like Belgaum to develop its urban infrastructure. We would be getting around 500-600 crores every year and the State Government would also give us 100 crores, plus the Corporation collects taxes. The state government through its other departments is also funding various projects for example the UGD project (Underground Drainage) which is estimated around 170 odd crores, so let’s say we would be getting around 800 crores for the city’s development. With Belgaum gaining the second capital status (unofficially) and a lot of investors interested to setup business activity here Belgaum has definitely gained a lot of importance in this region.

We have already received the first installment of 100 crores from the state Government and waiting for the Gazette notification of NURM funds to Belgaum. Before the first installment of 100 crores, we had received 18 crores special fund, and some fund was received for preparations of World Kannada Meet and the First Winter session. All these funds were used for repairing and re carpeting roads. It was our bad luck that the first installment of 100 crores was wastefully used for re-carpeting roads which were already re-carpeted or repaired. This valuable fund could have been used for other Urban infrastructure which the city is craving for and there has been a lot of public demand but the officers nor the local political system agreed to their demand.

Our local government Bodies (Corporation or Urban Development Authority, tourism) work in the age old fashion, we have a 100 year old Urban planning method and the work methodology is redundant and un-scientific. There is a limited role of public and NGOs in the decision making process.

Our urban design is outdated and there is no scope for newer objects of Urban infrastructure. An outdated land-use planning system, Age old transportation systems, improper & unscientific solid waste Management, Hardly any urban greening measures, No plan or sense of direction when its concerned to energy efficiency, No steps taken for disaster mitigation and absence of multi-party participatory processes.

This is an ideal time for us to participate in a multi-party participatory process because we feel this is an initial phase for the development activities to begin in Belgaum and “We” can together make the required change. When we thought of this opportunity we were considering a Conference or a simple get together of like people minded people from different walks of life who are passionate about Belgaum’s growth and development. We wanted an event of development and infrastructure for Belgaum. But then We realized that in the name of development most cities in India and elsewhere have had severe environmental irrevocable damages. We don’t want concrete Jungles with temperatures rising every year, Cities on the name of development have lost their green cover and are overly depending on the countryside regions for everything like power, food production, etc. re-engineering of these cities or Concrete Jungles is a humongous and a tedious task which will cost us millions of rupees and a social, political desire to make the changes.

If we want Belgaum to grow, it should grow systematically with the right components of Urban infrastructure and least environmental damages, Urban development which is sustainable in the longer run. If the whole process is well planned we wont have huge concrete jungles in the years to come, smaller and choked roads, higher amount of pollution, absence of green zones or lung zones.

This is the right time, and We all need to get together and participate in this event which will have key speakers talking on:

  • Urban Planning
  • Use of Greener and efficient energy
  • Good and Bad practices in Developing Cities
  • Modeling the complexity of the evolving city
  • Integrated Infrastructures for Sustainable Cities
  • Necessary infrastructure required for Industrial development of Belgaum.
  • Sustainable water conservation systems.

Anybody interested could offer suggestions or if you are good enough on this subject you can be a speaker in the conference.

This event should help us at least to create a Blue print and put forward our demands and tell the state government about our actual needs for urban infrastructure and development in Belgaum. We don’t want just development but well planned and systematic development to make Belgaum a model eco city.
AAB will act as a facilitator for this conference and on-line media partner. All are requested to leave comments and same would be forwarded to the organizing committee of the conference.

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38 COMMENTS

  1. It’s surely quiet encouraging seeing so many hearty comments. But on the part or the founders its a slow and long path to achieve.
    Human mind is very selfish – result – corruption. (Cannot blame only the govt. – Govt. is only a part of us)
    There by it calls for the need to create awareness of the mistakes each one does and provide a better path to follow. Eg. Star/manikchand etc packets thrown assuming they don’t matter. But with a population of 700000+ +, I’m sure at least 500000 packets per day including chocolate rappers etc thrown – this figure surely matters.

  2. Dear Belgaumites..

    Congratulations on the first get together..

    Let our Belgaum (VENUGRAM – Bamboo village as it was known in hey days) a place where we all can live peacefully, caring for the evironment, in harmony and safely.

    Examples of NON Belgaumite :
    1. Cutting down 100 year old tress for sake of widening the roads.
    2. Having communal disputes. e.g Ram Sena – Mutalik , Shiv Sena, Bhajrang dal, Marathis versus kannada language disputes and many others are NOT Belgaumites.
    3. Egoist leaders etc.

    The above are some of the examples where Our BELGAUM will be destroyed and we do not want these NON Belgaumites to get involved.

    Jai Ho
    A Belgaumnite – an interfaith with no langauge barrier person living in US / Australia

  3. Development of real estate should also be done in a planned and integral way so that people can live next to work, there is enough parking and recreational facility. Being from real estate industry in Belgaum, I will be happy to participate in the debate and contribute towards improvement of Belgaum.

  4. Dear Belgaumites..

    I am proud citizen of Belgaum living overseas.

    We want Belgaum (VENUGRAM – Bamboo village as it was known in hey days) to) a place where I was born and brought. Today some self centred egoist people are ruining my home call Belgaum and I am NOT happy about it.

    Examples:
    1. Cutting down 100 year old tress for sake of widening the roads.
    2. Having communal disputes.

    I am delighted that we are having a constructive debate of making our home – Belgaum a place where we all can live peacefully, caring for the evironment, in harmony and safely.

    Jai Ho
    A Belgaumnite – an interfaith with no langauge barrier person living in US / Australia

  5. Hi BGM people,

    I am from Thane.It is very great news that BGM is going to develop under infrastructure development facility of state government but before the urbanisation development government has to think first about the social component which will be affected by infrastructure development such as shop keepers those established very successively their own bussiness. Goverment has to think for them for give optional space on same place so they may continue their well established own bussiness without affection.

    • Dear Ravi:

      We are finalizing the dates, We plan to have the event in 1st week of July as some of the college kids would be free and will be helping us, in the mean time we are working on the content and finalizing some key speakers for the conference, Uday will be updating all the later events.

      Rajeev

  6. Hi all
    Belgaum our proud address the green heaven but much to our disappointment no serious developments no infra, airport being closed down for more than a year now you dont even see any light at the end of the tunnel God bless belgaum

  7. A very interesting topic, going green, am involved in LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) construction projects, i can provide more info on sustainable design such as "sustainable sites, Water efficiency, Energy & Atmosphere, Material & resources/recycling, Indoor Environmental Quality" In India Green Building council is doing good job in certifying Buldings & neighborhood development.

    • Hey your involvement in LEED will help us in this initative, can you explain us on how you can take it ahead…what do you propose..
      rajeev

  8. Hi Belgaumites,
    its indeed good that we all are providing our inputs. This exercise would be fruitful if we all share a common platform i.e meet once and prepare a action plan. I request Uday to finalise a date & venue for this programme. There would be many suggestions & plans which we can formally discuss.

    Regards,
    Santosh.H

  9. Hi to all Belgaum people,
    its awosome to see such kind of thinking in all our mind, & i am proud of it,
    make it wonderfull, usefull event, But i have one request lz do not discuse abt language if any body donot understand plz provide a transalator this should not spoil this valuable event, think beyond the emagination, ( Crime baby gets MILK)
    I am very sad coz i am missing this opportunity to join this event since i live in Bangalore

  10. It is really a great news to read through that Belgaum is getting an opportunity to makeover as a model city. Some of my thoughts are:

    1. Connectivity by Air should be a priority as that could lead to development of industrial needs
    2. As Hyd or Bangalore have specfic industrial hubs/zones for IT/PCB manufacturing, even we need have a similar one for allowing investors to consider Belgaum as a destination for business.
    3. Infrastructure – including Roads, Sanitry requirements, Flyer overs (as required) need to be the priorty, since today it is 700,000 and growing at same pace, the existing infrastructure would not be able to support it and it would be same case like other cities
    4. Environment conservation – As said, development should not be at the cost of loosing out on the greenery, so as someone earlier suggested, we need to have parks/gardens ineach area to balance the ecological requirement

    Hope these suggestions are helpful and would considerately make it's way to see a better Belgaum tomorrow.

  11. Great going,

    I am sure our belagavi will be going to see healthy developments….. Make this conference a grand success…. all the best….

  12. A good discussion!
    But it should not be limited to the BLOG please
    I am with you UDAY n Kudos for starting a good discussion
    n i hope it`ll become a Gudeline for further deveplopment of our city

  13. Dear Belgaumites..
    We have got enough support on the AAB blog… and it would definitely grow in future.
    We have a lot of people from different fields of expertise.. (
    There are lots of issues which need to be addressed. This virtually cannot happen just online.
    So, we need to actually have a meet on this regard… Only a physical movement can move things faster…
    Lets give it a serious thought…..!

  14. there is one simple logic for all the development

    WHEN ALL THE TREES HAVE BEEN CUT,
    WHEN ALL THE WATER HAS BEEN POISONED,
    WHEN ALL THE FISH HAVE BEEN CAUGHT OR DIED
    THEN MAN MAN WILL KNOW THAT WE CANNOT EAT MONEY
    NOW MATTER HOW MUCH WE HAVE OR HOW GOOD IT IS

    So think before doing anything bad

    Dear uday plz post this one

  15. 1) Emphasis on development of public transportation (more newer design buses, if possible with hybrid technology), give bicycle lanes, footpath for pedestrian

    2) develop lung space involve volunteers in doing the same,

    3) modernize the all local government offices, let them make citizens life easier

    4) give better facilities in government schools, if computerizing them then use only open source software

    5) impose penalties on ecology destroyers, incentivize rainwater harvesting, water recycleing at municipal level, if you want basic one fix all the leaking pips and taps

    6) develop local farmer markets, for this one volunteers should create awareness

    7) teach police people many languages and how to be friendly with citizen, let them take volunteers

    8) if municipality is giving 24hr water it is bound to be wasted definitely, it should be charged appropriately. today people are buying Rs12/- per ltr of water but are unable to pay Rs36/- per 1000ltr charged by water supply.

    9) solid waste management should be done at ward level only it is useless to transport the waste situated 15kms outside bgm burning diesel fuel, proper recycling plants for paper, glass, metal, heavy metals found in CFL, consumer electronics

    Points are many i can post it as comment but will it get heard at the right forum, i can not on stage bcoz i have stage fear

  16. What all we need ?

    We need gardens,,,

    * Every area should have a graden and a playground for kids, and that should be maintained properly from the goverment as they do in Bengalooru.

    We need Water,,,

    * we dont have water resource problem , around 7 revers flow accross the district, just we need better supply and systematic distribution it to the city.

    We need connectivity,,,

    * we are connected with bus,air and train, but we need improvemnts in infrastructure, a renoved bus stand, a good railway station, and good air connectivity. work is under progress for railway station, and airport building and night landing facility is improved now we need to focus on air connectivity and a good Bus stand.

    etc……

    And finally We need Harmony towards govt propeties, Education, knowledge as well as a good mind set to preserve all the properties as our own once they are constructed.

  17. Contd……….

    Similarly I suggest why don’t we conduct a similar event/ programme in BELGAUM w.r.t making our city a model eco city, by this we will open doors to ideas, thoughts and suggestions from local next-generation architects. As AAB is promoting ‘Belgaum has IT’ in many colleges in the city & has built a good network of students, why don’t we also in BELGAUM initiate a programme called “How do you want the BELGAUM city to look like?” & collect ideas/suggestion from leading architecture colleges students in the city. By this we can ensure local involvement in public projects and get insight into local talent. For students it will be getting hands-on experience on an public project and possibly see elements of their design come alive in future.

    Hope this suggestion is worth considering & in sync with what you are looking into.

    Regards,
    Praveen.

  18. Hi Uday,

    I really appreciate your efforts & concern for the development of BELGAUM. This post has a broad vision & a firm mission, in this regard I have a small suggestion.
    Recently BIAL authorities (Bangalore International Airport) had introduced a programme called VisionAir where the architecture student (next-generation architects.) were asked to participate in the same & come up with innovative ideas/suggestion & plans for the further expansion of the airport. This program had a very good response from the leading architecture colleges in the Bangalore city & BIAL authorities have picked some feasible designs i.e., the winners of this programme.

  19. Some Suggestions from my end:

    1. All the main roads should be 4 lane with road dividers and footpath (5 feet atleast)on either side. Road dividers should have provision to plant trees
    2. We should build one toilet in all the important and market areas
    3. We should have Bus bay on all main roads
    4. Multilevel parking facility in market areas
    5. Bogarves to Railway Station circle should be six lane
    6. Flyovers at Some railwaygates, Chennamma circle and Bogarves
    6. New Bus Terminals at Tilakwadi, Sadashivnagar, MahateshNagar and Shahpur

    • all these can be done provided the laws and acts are amended to execute the projects in advance rather than wait the crisis to make a call.

  20. Hi !
    Good article and some really good posts and thoughts.The fact is when invertment decisons are made uneducated and corrupt politicians these money will be wasted and used for personnel benifits.Increase accontibility of what projects are being worked on and how much money is allocated these projects and spent and make this information available to public can help to some extent of prevention of fraud.

    Sam

  21. also get in touch with us the students of department of architecture , gogte college of engineering belgaum , could help u immensely . so get in touch

  22. Hey Uday, that is what is called wealth of information. Your work is really appreciated! All said and done, funds sanctioned, work completed but due to corruption and low quality of work it is not contributing to the real urban revolution.
    For the effectiveness of the available programs, the corruption and mal-practices need to be curbed. So I think AAB along with individuals who know the city well, engineers etc need to pursue and oversee the work of the government undertaken and see to it that it is done in a efficient way. Urban revolution in cities Belgaum can be acheived only when the minds of people like you and me are revolutionized first and we held ourselves responsible for it, truly and sincerely.

  23. Hi All,
    " It was our bad luck that the first installment of 100 crores was wastefully used for re-carpeting roads which were already re-carpeted or repaired."-One more opportunity to make money for everyone in the hierarchy.
    This is going to happen unless n until there is no transparency(if not 100%). First and foremost step in development would be to block these leaks and loopholes…..

  24. Any updates on 1) Ring road 2) International Cricket Stadium 3) Bus stand renovation 3) Airport & re-launch of flights 4) Railway station renovation 5) Vidhan Saudha?

  25. seems like there is going to be a rise in corruption and all the funds misused..
    The current development activities are just a forefront to all of this.. nothing will improve..
    A great example would be the ridiculous power cuts lately.. more over the insufficient water supply.

  26. good one uday.
    Hope so Belgaum will be one of the finest city in terms of good roads, adequate water and electricity supply, best town planning system and greenery all around.
    OF COURSE NOT AT the cost of Environment.

  27. I appreciate ur efforts for growth & progress of Belgaum.policy makers should spend time to study the infrastructure development in other cities like Gurgaon,Greater Noida.Chandigar.take professional suggestions.Most important no personal/vested interest.I am ready to share my views.please arrange for conference.My younger brother is settled in U.S.,engineer graduated from G.I.T.Belgaum equally interested participating in such activities & he can rope in many of his friends who hail from Belgaum & persuade them to get involved in such activities.
    All the best

  28. Wonderful Initiative by AAB …
    development should not be at the cost of Environment …
    we need a good ciizens forum and its only possible when like minded people come together
    Eagerly looking forward for the conference .
    Thank u AAB for this valuable info

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