Nearly 7,000 defence ministry officials will soon move to new offices as the Prime Minster along with Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat inaugurated the new office complexes on September 16, morning after a ‘puja’. The new spaces will come up at Kasturba Gandhi Marg and Africa Avenue, replacing the old ‘Pre-Independence Era’ hutments around the north and south blocks.
The offices need to be shifted as part of changes needed to the Central Vista project.
“The shifting of offices will free 50 acres of land for Central Vista development. The defence ministry will vacate 9.2 lakh square feet of space in these hutments and take up 9.6 lakh square feet in two new multi-storeyed complexes that are spread over a total area of 13 acres,” said a second official.
While the office complex on Africa Avenue is a seven-storey space and will house offices of only the defence ministry, the eight-storey Kasturba Gandhi Marg office — in addition to the defence ministry offices — will also be used to temporarily accommodate offices currently located at Parivahan Bhawan and Shram Shakti Bhawan till their new offices are readied at the Central Secretariat Complex.
These office complexes have been constructed at a cost of Rs.775 crores provided by the Ministry of Defence.
The shift is needed to accommodate the new Prime Minister’s residence as part of the Central Vista project. The project includes a new parliament building and new office blocks for the functioning of central government ministries and departments.
However, it will take some time before work on the vacated site to build the PM residence and other offices start.
“It will take around two months for the existing offices to shift lock stock and barrel. After that, the process will start — floating tenders for the project, selection of bidders, etc etc. It’s still a long way before the actual construction starts,” the official quoted earlier said.
The new buildings, constructed by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development as part of its Central Vista project, provide a modern eco-friendly, green building environment.