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GCDA told to revise swimming complex project

By Our Staff Reporter

KOCHI, JAN. 11. The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has asked the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) to rework its proposal to construct an international swimming complex so as to suit the SAI norms.

The GCDA presented its proposal to J.N. Singh, Director General of SAI, who was taken to the site of the proposed complex on his brief stop over during his visit to Alappuzha today.

The GCDA proposal is to construct an international swimming complex in the 125-cent plot near the Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium, which includes swimming pools, warming-up pool, facilities for diving and other accessories.

The complex is estimated to cost Rs. 8 crores and the GCDA was expecting assistance from the SAI and the State Government in implementing it. However, Mr. Singh told the GCDA officials, led by its chairman, Antony Isaac, that the SAI could only take up projects of its own.

This would mean that the GCDA should hand over the land on lease for 30 years. The SAI will construct the complex and the GCDA will have no say in its operations.

Second option

As a second option, the GCDA can implement the project by retaining the ownership. But the Union Government will provide only 50 per cent of the cost. The GCDA will have to raise the initial half of the project cost.

The GCDA will hold another round of talks with the SAI next year. "If the project is to be implemented on a 50-50 cost bearing basis, the GCDA will prefer to have it in the city suburbs where the land costs less," Prof. Isaac said. G. Kishore, Director, southern region of SAI, and A.J. Rajan, secretary of Kerala State Sports Council, accompanied Mr. Singh.

The GCDA was also planning to present the proposal for constructing a three-storey sports hostel and the Chilavanoor Waterfront Development Project.

The Rs. 1.5-crore Chilavanoor project is for developing the 32-hectare land, including the water body between the Vytilla bridge along Sahodaran Ayyappan road and the bund road, in a phased manner.

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