The government of India is planning for a massive redevelopment project in the Indian capital of New Delhi. However, Instead of building in a new location, the new buildings will be made in the existing Central Vista.
The current administrative center will be completely renovated and many new office buildings will be built for different ministries, with an estimated cost of 1.7 billion dollars or 13,450 crore rupees.
Central Vista and the underlying colonial feeling.
The Central Vista was designed when India was part of the British Empire. In 1911 the British Imperial Government decided to move the capital of British India from Calcutta to Delhi. It was partly because of the protests and partly because of the history of Delhi.
Delhi served as an administrative center for the region, and the British wanted to become a part of the rich history of the region, So the construction of a new administrative area was planned.
A ceremonial axis was created along which parks and government buildings were located, called Kingsway was later renamed Rajpath, which was again renamed after being revamped to kartavya path.
Central vista is similar to the American capital Washington dc in its design but both signify very different things while Washinton signifies the independence of America, Central Vista was a sign of colonial power.
The fact that Central Vista was initially created for the British, and by the British does give Centra Vista an underlying colonial feeling.
The Central Vista post-independence.
After India gained independence Central Vista became the center of the Indian government. The existing structures were redeveloped and given different functions, and some new structures were built.
The viceroy’s House was converted to Rashtrapati Bhavan, the official residence of the President of India. The parliament which originally housed the Imperial Legislative council is now used to house both chambers of India’s democratically elected parliament.
The 1.8Km long stretch of road on the Central Vista is now used for Republic day parades on 26 January each Year.
The need for the Redevelopment of Central Vista.
Central Vista is meant to be the center of Government but only houses part of the Government because most of the buildings are being used for different purposes than they were originally built for.
The secretariate buildings were supposed to house different ministries of the Government but, the buildings are not sufficient and as a result, many of the ministries as well as the Prime minister’s residence are located outside Central Vista.
Because of ministries and the Prime minister’s residence being outside Central Vista public has to face many traffic restrictions, and restrictions are especially severe during big events such as Republic day.
Therefore the government has decided to redevelop the entire area, in hopes to create a better and more efficient administrative center for the largest democracy in the world. And give the public relief from the restrictions.
Some of the changes that will take place in Central Vista as part of the redevelopment.
The most notable change is the construction of a new parliament, which is gonna be built right next to the existing parliament. Unlike the current parliament, the new parliament would be triangular, not circular.
The existing secretariate buildings that are not big enough would be demolished and new secretariate buildings would be built in their place, this is to bring all the ministries of the Indian government into one place.
To make commuting between different buildings an underground electric people mover system would also be created, that would stop at each building.
A central conference center is also being built for large events and it would have many auditoriums as well as several conferences, and seminar rooms.
The national archives center is also located on the kartavya path and consists of an old building from the Imperial time, and a newer building that was built later, as a part of the redevelopment the older building will be renovated.
The national museum would be relocated to an existing Secretariate building outside of Central Vista, to make way for the new Secretariate buildings. The Building to which the National Museum will be moved is 3 times bigger than the current National Museum.
Many other changes will be made to Central Vista as part of this massive Redevelopment to create a new and better administrative district for the Indian Democracy.
The Rajpath has been completely revamped and renamed as part of the Redevelopment of the Central Vista and it was recently inaugurated by Pm Modi.