Plan to revamp Delhi’s Pragati Maidan okayed

The cabinet committee on economic affairs on Tuesday cleared the redevelopment plan for Pragati Maidan, including a hotel, which will be built on its premises. If everything goes as planned, the existing trade fair venue will have a massive convention centre, an underground parking lot, new access roads and exhibition halls by mid-2019.

LC Goyal, chairperson and managing director of India Trade Promotion Organisation, confirmed to TOI that the approval had been received from CCEA. He said that the implementation of the Rs 2,254-crore project would be put on fast track.

“We will apply for statutory permissions from agencies like DDA, the municipal corporation and DUAC and expect to be able to start the bidding process in the next four-five months, for which we will invite international players as well. In the meantime, we will be able to demolish most of the existing structures, which have been identified for clearance for phase-I of the project. Some portions, like hall number 18, will be retained till the end so that there is space for programmes and exhibitions available at all times,” Goyal said.

He added that all states had agreed to hand over their respective pavilions to ITPO, with the Haryana and defence pavilions having already been demolished in October 2016.

“The hotel, which was also approved as part of the project, will partly fund the redevelopment plan. We expect it to be a 350-400-room hotel for which land will either be given freehold or on perpetual lease,” said Goyal.

PWD, which has been entrusted with the task of providing traffic solutions around the venue, has already appointed a consultant and will be preparing a detailed project report by mid-February.

The Pragati Maidan redevelopment plan was conceived in 2006, 44 years after the exhibition ground was inaugurated. Spread over an area of 115 acres in the heart of the city, Pragati Maidan was designed by architect Raj Rewal.

The work has been divided into two phases. In the first phase, an existing built-up area of 25,000 sq m will be razed and replaced with a built-up area of 1.2 lakh sq m. In phase-II, an additional capacity of 88,000 sq m will be built. Each new structure will be two-floor high, each floor with an area of 10,000 sq m.

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