Vijayawada city will soon have a new icon in the form of a City Square that will be built under the Public-Private Partnership initiative at the Swarajya Maidan in the heart of the city. Guizhou International Investment Corporation of China has designed the City Square that will come up on a five-acre land at an estimated cost of Rs 135 crore. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naiduapproved the design today at a meeting attended by Water Resources Minister Devineni Umamaheswara Rao, Krishna district Collector Babu A, Municipal Commissioner G Veerapandian and representatives of GIIC.

“The City Square will be a jewel in AP’s crown and be a large tourist attraction,” Naidu said on the occasion. The proposed City Square will have shopping complexes and a stupa depicting the heritage of the region. An underground parking lot will also be developed.

(Andhra Nation has a suggestion for the rulers. Please shun English names like City Square. A new state and monuments present a perfect opportunity to introduce some good Telugu names. Viajayawada has a tradition where a word like Vaaradhi is very much in use. Kanakadurga Vaaradhi is not called Kanakadurga Bridge by any one. Keep the tradition alive. People like Yaralagadda Lakshmi Prasad have repeatedly been requesting the Naidu governement on the issue of usage of Telugu names. Please heed to sane advise)

The existing Rythu Bazaar (farmers’ market) at Swarajya Maidan will be relocated at Gandhinagar and a new complex built with 350 shops at a cost of Rs 4 crore, according to the district Collector.

The existing government buildings belonging to the water resources department will also be dismantled to make space for the City Square. As the Swarajya Maidan has been serving as the only large vacant ground in the city for decades, where every public meeting is held besides the annual industrial exhibition, there has been opposition to convert it into a City Square as it deprived the city of “lung space”. Allaying the apprehension, the Collector said vacant space that would be more than twice as large would be created and could be used for public purposes.

Vijayawada Municipal Corporation has selected 38 larger parks, located in interior colonies under its three circles, for development. This is to provide lung space in the city and help people access walking tracks in the morning and evening as part of corporation’s plan to make Vijayawada a green city. China’s Guizhou International Investment Corporation (GIIC), which has been roped in to develop ghats for Krishna Pushkaram and other projects in city, is likely to take up the responsibility of planning and developing the select parks.

Vijayawada Swaraj Maidan turns into City square