Central Vista Redevelopment Project: India Unveils Plans to Revamp Its Administrative Capital

Monday, 14 November 22, 06:25

Project Highlights

  • Central Vista Redevelopment Project or Central Vista Projects, refers to the ongoing redevelopment to revamp Central Vista - the administrative heart of the Union Government of India.
  • Originally designed by Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker during British colonial rule, the central administrative area will be altered and retrofitted with modern state-of-the-art infrastructural facilities to meet the demand of the current administrative requirements.
  • The ambitious project, headed by CPWD (Central Public Works Department), will be built at a cost of INR 13,450 crore (USD 1.7 billion) in a span of six years between 2020 to 2026.

Location of the Project

Central Vista is located at Lutyens', Raisina Hill, New Delhi.

Central Vista Location

Central Vista Project Background

The current Central Vista dates back to the British Colonial Period when the administrative capital was shifted from Kolkata (Calcutta) to New Delhi. A new city was built to house the administrative divisions along with all the supporting infrastructure and facilities.

The task to develop the new admin capital was given to Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker. As part of the plan, a new Viceroy House (later became the Rashtrapati Bhavan - the official residence of the President of India, Council House(later became the Parliament House of India), North Block, South Block, and Record Office (later National Archive) were built for smooth functioning of the imperial government.

After India’s independence in 1947, the government retained the administrative buildings. However, in the decades following, new buildings were constructed to accommodate the contemporary demands of office spaces and changing infrastructural needs.

Since the new developments were impromptu and not according to Lutyen’s original master plan, Central Vista lost the original symmetry, and aesthetics and also became gradually inefficient for smooth functioning after 75 years of independence.

Also, Delhi’s seismic zone changed to zone 4 from zone 2 and the growing strength needed better and more efficient fire safety measures. Therefore, a revamped Central Vista was conceived to be the solution.

Central Vista Project – Scope

The Central Vista Redevelopment Plan is proposed to meet the present and future infrastructure needs of space for the Parliament, Ministries, and Departments. The project also aims to provide better public facilities, social amenities, tourist attractions, parking facilities, etc.

Under this ambitious project, 18 new buildings will be constructed and a dozen buildings, including Udyog Bhawan, Shastri Bhawan, Nirman Bhawan, and IGNCA (Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts) will be demolished.

Central Vista Master Plan Layout

Rashtrapati Bhawan, the current parliament building, the North and South Blocks, and the National Archives of India (NAI) will be retained.

New Parliament Building

A new triangular parliament building, covering an area of 65000 m­², will be constructed with facilities to expand the seating capacities of the legislature. The new parliament will have a Lok Sabha seating capacity of 888 and a Rajya Sabha seating capacity of 384. The building will also have a joint seating capacity of 1272 during parliamentary joint sessions.

The Central Vista Avenue

Central Vista Avenue or Kartvyapath extends from the Rashtrapati Bhawan to the India Gate. The 3 km long tree-lined stretch is one of the most attractive tourist places in Delhi, especially during the Republic Day parade. As per the revamp masterplan, the avenue will be refurbished with upgraded infrastructure and new social amenities. The lawn space will be enhanced from the current 350000 m­² to 390000 m­². Moreover, the revamped avenue will have a transit plaza, vending zones, pedestrian underpasses, improved parking space, and upgraded security measures.

Common Central Secretariat

The Common Central Secretariat (CCS) will comprise 10 office buildings and Central Conference Centre with modern, state-of-the-art facilities for housing all the Ministries and Departments along with their attached and subordinate offices in 10 CCS buildings. The objective is to bring administrative efficiency and improve the coordination and synergy between the intra-governmental organs of the Government of India.

The three secretariat buildings (No. 1, 2, 3), currently under construction by L&T Ltd, will replace the IGNCA building. Once completed by its deadline of Nov 2023, the employees of Udyog Bhawan, Shastri Bhawan, Nirman Bhawan, and Krishi Bhawan will move to these new buildings.

Then the work for four new central secretariat buildings (No. 4, 5, 6, 7) will begin after demolishing the Udyog Bhawan, Shastri Bhawan, Nirman Bhawan, and Krishi Bhawan. The last three central secretariat buildings (No. 8, 9, 10) will be built by demolishing the Vigyan Bhawan, Vice President’s current residence, and National Museum.

These new secretariat buildings will feature a common passage running through them via an underground Automated People Mover system. DMRC (Delhi Metro Rail Corporation) has been roped in to construct a 2.65 km underground metro corridor with four stations. The metro system can accommodate around 30,000 passengers through the new Central Vista corridor every day.

Prime Minister’s residence and office

The new residence and office of the Prime Minister of India will be constructed on a plot south of the South Block. The facility will be spread across 15 acres, with 10 four-storey buildings. This facility will also house the SPG (Special Protection Group) building.

Vice President’s residence and office

The new Vice President's enclave (which will house both the residence and office) will be built on a plot north of the North Block. The VP enclave will spread over an area of 15 acres, with 32 five-storey buildings.

National Museum

The South and North Blocks, the current house of the PMO, Ministry of Home, Ministry of External Affairs, and Ministry of Finance, will be converted into the new National Museum.

Central Vista Redevelopment Project Timeline

Scheduled between 2020 and 2026, the project as of 2020, the project was envisioned in 2019.

  • Sep 2019: The Central Government of India conceived the master plan for Central Vista Avenue redevelopment.
  • Oct 2019: The architectural consultancy work was awarded to Ahmedabad-based HCP Design Planning and Management Pvt Ltd.
  • Sep 2020: The CPWD awarded a contract of INR 862 cr for the constriction of New Parliament Building to Tata Projects Ltd.
  • Dec 2020: Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of New Parliament Building.
  • Jan 2021: The CPWD awarded a contract of INR 477 cr for the redevelopment of Central Vista Avenue to Shapoorji Pallonji and Company Pvt Ltd.
  • September 2022: PM Modi inaugurated the revamped Central Vista Avenue and renamed it Kartavya Path (earlier called the Rajpath).

Central Vista Redevelopment Project: Budget

The cost of the Central Vista project, has been estimated to be around INR 13,450 crore (USD 1.7 billion) and to be spent over six years on various projects.

Central Vista Redevelopment Project: Contractors

  • Tate Project was awarded the contract to build the new parliament house.
  • Shapoorji Pallonji and Company Pvt Ltd was awarded the contract for construction and maintenance (for five years from construction) of the Central Vista Avenue.
  • The contract for the construction and maintenance of the first three of the 10 buildings of the Common Central Secretariat has been awarded to Larsen & Toubro (L&T).
  • The contract for the construction of the Vice President’s residence and the office was awarded to Kamladityya Construction.

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