Rs 1 crore project to make PMC building fireproof

The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) headquarters, which witnessed a freak fire two months ago, is all set to become fire proof. The civic body has cleared decks for the Rs 1-crore project that includes installation of advanced fire detection and sensor systems in its main building and two parking lots.

Safety first: A Maruti Omni had suddenly caught fire in a parking lot of 
the civic body's main building two months ago. File pic

The ambitious project has been hanging in balance for the past two years as the officials reportedly could not rope in a consultant to carry out feasibility survey of the project. Now that the civic body has appointed a consultant and is willing to invest more money on the project, fire could well be a thing of past soon the PMC premises.

The main building has two entrances -- one of which is on the Congress Bhavan Road and the other entrance located right behind on the Mahatma Phule statue on PMC Road. Both entrances have large parking lots where the project provides for automatic water sprinklers, underground water pipelines and civil work for other disaster management purposes. 

Earlier proposal
Earlier, the PMC had allocated Rs 85 lakh for the project in the 2010-11 budget, but now the civic body plans to increase the amount to Rs 1 crore through a proposal, which will be tabled in the next year's budget. In October, the civic body appointed independent consultants from Peshwe and Associates. They are now 
assisting the civic body in chalking out a detailed fire safety plan. 

According to PMC officials, at least four companies have bid for the contract, tenders for which were floated around two months ago. Executive engineer Rajesh Shinde from PMC's building department said the sprinklers in the parking lot would have open pipelines which will be connected to combustible bulbs. 

"The bulbs are programmed to burst as the temperature increases during a fire and activate the sprinklers. Fire extinguishers and smoke detectors will be installed in all offices, rooms and passages.", he added. The issue of fire safety assumes significance in light of a recent blaze in one of the PMC parking lots.
On September 20, a Maruti Omni suddenly caught fire around 4 pm because of a suspected fuel leakage. Though no one was injured in the incident, it prompted PMC officials to hurriedly implement the proposal.

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