The Telegraph
Friday , May 9 , 2014
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Museum races towards reality

- Bricks & mortar build up archive stop for march date

Brick by brick, the Bihar Museum is taking shape.

The authorities are eyeing March 22 next year as the inauguration date for the world-class museum coming up in the city.

Work on the structure of the administrative block — the tallest among the nine blocks in the museum — is in the final lap. Four of the six floors have come up. (See chart)

Structural work, including construction of pillars and walls, of one of the two exhibition blocks is half done. Almost half of the children’s museum block has also been raised.

Sources in the building construction department said work on few of the museum blocks is likely to take final shape by December this year. Internal furnishing is expected to start in a couple of weeks. The tender for the job would be floated once the general election’s model code of conduct is lifted, sources said.

A brainchild of chief minister Nitish Kumar, the Bihar Museum is being developed over 13.5 acres on the southern flank of Bailey Road at an estimated outlay of Rs 530 crore. It is being developed by the departments of building construction and art, culture and youth affairs. At the time of laying the museum’s foundation stone on July 9 last year, Nitish had set the March 2015 target for the project.

The museum is divided in four different zones — educational, lobby, administrative and permanent gallery.

Larsen & Toubro (L&T), the firm awarded the contract for the museum’s construction, is advancing on a war footing. Building construction department sources claimed that people are working for 16 hours a day in two shifts of eight hours each.

“Though the department is working simultaneously on several key projects, including an International Convention Centre on north Gandhi Maidan, the Bihar Museum is a priority. There is no question of delay in the project as the chief minister has set the target of March 22 next year for it,” said a senior engineer associated with the project.

He added that efforts were on to complete work on the administrative block and one of the exhibition blocks by the end of February next year so that the complex can be inaugurated in time.

The construction is being monitored on several levels. “A team from the Japanese architecture firm, Maki and Associates, keeps on visiting the site every few days. Another team from a third-party consultancy firm is stationed at the site and they supervise the work daily. Several closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras have been installed at various locations on the museum site, through which the Japanese firm, the consultant and the department officials monitor the construction works,” said another engineer.

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