New Delhi: Ten identical stone-clad, doughnut-shaped buildings housing all the 51 central government ministries with 51,000 employees. An underground shuttle linked to the metro, connecting all the buildings. Smart technology-driven offices surrounded by greenery, a modern conference centre and landscaped lawns.
This is how the Central Secretariat complex will look like after one of the most ambitious urban upgrade projects of Lutyens Delhi is completed, government sources told ThePrint.
It is part of the Central Vista Redevelopment Project, which also includes a new Parliament building that will be ready by 2022. The first three office buildings of the Central Secretariat complex will come up in the plot where the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts stands and will be completed by 2023.
A far more complex project than the new Parliament building, both in terms of size and managing the logistics, preparatory work for the Central Secretariat revamp is under way in full swing, with HCP Design, Planning and Management Private Limited, the project architect giving finishing touches to the design.
The Central Secretariat complex currently has offices of 22 Union ministries, housing 41,000 employees, and appears almost run down at many places.
“The design of the Central Secretariat’s offices will help to improve the efficiency and productivity of administration,” Bimal Patel, head of HCP Design, Planning and Management Private Limited told ThePrint. “They will have modern facilities and infrastructure, be energy efficient, modular and easy to maintain.”
‘Doughnut-shaped building, rectangular courtyard’
The ten stone-clad buildings will come up on four plots along the Central Vista — five on either side of the Rajpath — where different ministries are currently located. The old structures will be demolished to make way for the new buildings. The height of all the buildings will be 42 m (ground + six floors), which will be lower than India Gate.
The exteriors of all the buildings will be identical to the other surrounding Lutyens buildings.
According to the proposed design, each of the four plots will have a cluster of three doughnut-shaped buildings, housing different offices. And there will be a rectangular courtyard with big trees in the middle. The ground floor of each of the buildings will have shared facilities like conference halls and cafes.
Besides, each of the three buildings will have an interconnected basement allowing people to go from one office to another. The offices will have open floors, which if needed in future, could be expanded
An important feature of the proposed plan is the thrust given to transit-oriented development.
According to government sources, the design being firmed up by the architectural firm proposes building an underground people mover (kind of an electric vehicle with automated carriages). It will be built in a loop below the ground level and will connect to the metro that runs perpendicularly across the Central Vista, on the lines of the interconnected airport terminals in Dubai or Singapore.
“Office goers can get out of the metro, take the shuttle and reach the basement of their respective office block. From there they can take an elevator to go to their office,” a government source said.
“Being connected to the metro by an underground people mover, they will also promote the use of public transport,” Patel said.
Besides the underground shuttle, an overground bus route will also connect all the buildings.
Modern central conference centre to replace Vigyan Bhawan
Vigyan Bhawan, the government’s main convention centre, will be among the structures that will be demolished. A modern central conference centre with all the latest amenities will come up adjacent to the National Archives, one of the handful of buildings that is not being demolished.
Senior housing ministry officials, who did not want to be named, said the Central Secretariat is being designed to make it compact. “The character of the area is not going to change in any way. It’s just that we are making it more efficient by optimally using the space available to cater to the growing requirement,” said a senior housing ministry official.
“Currently, in the Central Secretariat there are only 22 ministries with 41,000 employees. The remaining 29 ministries where another 10,000 employees work are located across the city,” the official added. “Many of them are running from rented properties. This is draining the exchequer. The revamp will help create more space to accommodate all the 51 ministries.”
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Of all the thing India could have taken from the BE, why did it have to be Brutalism?
If 10000 people are working on rented premises the area on rent will be 7,50,000 sq feets minimum. If assuming rent of Rs. 100 per sq. ft. it will be annual rent of Rs.90 crs. If all the ministries will be together that shall have huge savings as well.
I think it is a good move.
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