Monday, 30th October 2017

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Kiosk promise for Gariahat by Puja

The stalls would also have an overhead shade that would extend 5ft from the closed doors and act as a rain guard

By Subhajoy Roy in Calcutta
  • Published 8.03.19, 2:58 AM
  • Updated 8.03.19, 2:58 AM
  • 2 mins read
A prototype of the hawkers’ stall that opens horizontally. Picture by Sanat Kr Sinha

A 200-metre stretch of Rashbehari Avenue, from the Bata store opposite Basanti Devi College to the Gariahat crossing, will get waterproof and fire-retardant kiosks in place of the existing plastic-wrapped ones by Puja.

The stretch has been chosen for a pilot project, based on which it will be decided whether to have similar kiosks on footpaths across Gariahat.

Mayor Firhad Hakim visited the office of the Calcutta Architecture Foundation at Hindustan Park on Wednesday evening to inspect two prototypes of booths for hawkers.

“I want one stretch of Gariahat to have the new kiosks by Puja. In fact, if all of us work together, it can be done even before the monsoon,” Hakim said on Thursday.

Abin Chaudhuri, a member of the architects’ foundation, said Hakim had chosen the prototype with doors that open horizontally. “The stalls will be 7ft high, 4ft deep and 2.5ft wide,” he said.

The kiosks would take up less of the footpath than the existing stalls.

Chaudhuri said each kiosk, when open, would occupy 5.5ft of pavement space. “The doors are about 2ft and a hawker and one customer standing would occupy another foot,” he said.

The stalls would also have an overhead shade that would extend 5ft from the closed doors and act as a rain guard.

Two to four kiosks will be placed side by side, with no gap between them. There will be passages for entry and exit after each such block.

“Each of the kiosks will be 4ft wide. So when placed together, they will occupy 8ft to 16ft space. We have kept provision for advertisements at the back of the stalls. So a 16ft-wide panel that is clearly visible from the road would fetch huge revenue for the corporation,” said Rukmini Mukherjee, another architect.

The kiosks will be built at the corporation’s workshop in Entally, based on the model designed by the architects.

The stalls will have a washable exterior with abstract paintings on them.

The mayor visited the Entally workshop on Thursday evening. Five kiosks were to be handed over to hawkers who had lost their stalls in a fire at Gariahat in January but the stalls couldn’t be handed over as they were yet to be fitted with wheels.

Hakim also suggested a few changes such as sloped roofs to help drain rainwater.

The kiosks would be handed over after the changes are made. “The wheels are important so that the kiosks can be removed as and when needed,” the mayor said.