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Saturday, 13 June 2015

New city centres needed to decongest Thrissur: expert panel - Kerala

Rice Bazaar, one of the old markets in the city, will be preserved as a heritage site. —Photo: K.K. Najeeb  

Rice Bazaar, one of the old markets in the city, will be preserved as a heritage site.

Expert panel suggest expansion of city to areas

A study on city development by a team of architects said that new city centres had to be created to decentralise the pressure in the old heritage town.

Chi Ti-Nan, an architect from Taiwan, who led the study, noted that the monocentric city should be transformed to a polycentric one to decongest the city core. He suggested the preservation of M.O. Road, High Road, Rice Bazaar, Chettyangadi and Nayarangadi as heritage places.

He suggested development of new city centres such as Sakthan Nagar, Puzhakkal, Aswini junction and Mannuthy by expanding the city. The city should not be concentrated only in the Swaraj Round, he added.

The main suggestions of the study include relocation of wholesale market to new commercial areas like Sakthan Nagar.

“New city centres should be developed in western part of the city to release the heavy traffic in the old town areas. Thus, the charm and cultural values of the old heritage town can be recreated,” the architect noted. He also stressed the need to conserve culture and heritage of the city with proper guidelines. The team also called for a comprehensive study to identify areas to be preserved.

Building activities in the preservation zone should comply with the old fabric structure, including conservation of heritage buildings.

The study proposes an underpass from the inner ring of the Swaraj Round to the Sakthan stand to provide space for safer pedestrian movement. Other suggestions include more public toilets, resting spaces for porters, head load workers and bus shelters. The need for public spaces was stressed.
A public opinion survey conducted as part of the study stressed the need for pedestrian-friendly, clean roads, which take into consideration the need of the cyclists and footpaths that can be used by the physically challenged. Lack of effective waste management system and need for more public toilets, especially for women; clogged drains and dogs and stray cattle, which feast on the piles of waste, were other manor concerns of the public.

Source: The Hindu, 11th June 2015

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