Shimla, Feb 15 (PTI) The state Public Works Department has chalked out a plan to stabilise sinking portions of the historic Ridge in Shimla in two phases, an official said.
The Ridge has been sinking for several months on three sides--outside Gaiety Theatre, near Lakkar Bazar and DAV School.
Shimla PWD Superintending Engineer (SE) Suresh Kapoor said the sinking portions of the Ridge will be stabilised under the Shimla Smart City project.
In phase I, the sinking portion outside Gaiety Theatre will be stabilised by constructing an RCC (reinforced cement concrete) structure at an estimated cost of Rs 8 crore, Kapoor said.
'We are waiting for a technical report from the IIT-Roorkee to know whether the construction of an RCC structure outside Gaiety Theatre is feasible or not,' he added. The estimated cost of constructing RCC structures under phase II will be known only after preparing designs and drawings for it, he added.
Earlier in 1980s, a similar problem was faced in the area where Padam Dev Complex is situated now.
An RCC structure was constructed in 1988-89 during the tenure of first Shimla Mayor Adarsh Kumar Sood to tackle the problem.
'We created an RCC structure to stabilise the sinking portion after getting a technical report from the IIT-Roorkee. A multi-storey PD commercial complex was built beneath the RCC structure for the optimum utilisation of the space. On the top, we installed the statue of the late PM Indira Gandhi in 1990,' former mayor Sood said.
Welcoming the proposal, he said it should have been done several years ago.
The IIT-Roorkee was engaged a few months ago to carry out a study to know the reasons behind the sinking Ridge and probable steps to stabilise it.
It is likely to submit its report to the state government soon.
'We have already prepared the designs and drawings of phase I,' Kapoor said, adding that after getting the technical report, the phase I of the project will be forwarded to the Shimla Municipal Corporation and the Town and Country Planning Department for approval.
Kapoor said the work on phase I will start within a month of getting necessary approvals.
In reply to a question, the PWD official said, 'Our main aim is to stabilise the sinking Ridge. After constructing RCC structures, we may think of using the space beneath these for use on the lines of PD Complex if the National Green Tribunal and other institutions approve so.' Kapoor further said they may think of installing a statue of the late PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee on the top of the RCC structure outside Gaiety Theatre. PTI DJI RDK RDK