The Mantri Mall : Have We Gone Nuts ?

This is incredible. First they plan, permit and actually build a gigantic Mall in the worst possible location. And then immediately throw tantrums with a sense of entitlement! They want space for a 1000 more cars, and sorry bus folks, you're not welcome here.

(click on the above pic for the Bangalore Mirror article)

The sense of priorities is so clear, and so screwed up.

We don't need parks.
Or bus stops.

We need malls.
And more parking for private cars.
So we can all drive more and more and more and more of us can do it.
So we choke the damn air with carbon.
And to hell with buses, pedestrians, cycles,
And to hell with perspective.
We need more selling, and more buying.

Damn, I might start sounding like a left-leaning bozo. But the truth is, this sense of entitlement on top of extreme short-sightedness, chasing the wrong set of goals and the blind belief in the glitz people have seen someplace without understanding the implications is beginning to get to me.

I do not expect better of Mantri and other developers, cause they'd rather do this, but all ye others who are responsible for the city, and profess love for it, whither ?

Posted via email from bangalorekaapi


Ramjee said...

Why just this mall, every other mall in bangalore has screwed up the locality they exist in:
Forum- Hosur Road
Inox - Mc Grath Road
Bangalore Central - Mg Road, Outer Ring Road (BTM-Jayanagar)
Total Mall - Sarjapur Road
Total Mall - Old Airport road
Spar/Lifestyle - Inner ring road
Spar- Bannergatta Road
Various offices on the Bannergatta road.
So many many small buildings that cropped up on outer ring road, NH7 (road leading to BIAL)
And the list goes on and on, there is no dearth of lack of planning at any point in bangalore.

It is truly a sad state of affairs that people in supposedly responsible positions( Mr. Sreehari) don't see this.

As you said, we got our priorities terribly wrong, and the pace at which we are going does not leave any chance at a remedy.

(by the way, the last year has been the most hot/ dry year in my 7 years in bangalore). I would not go to the extant of saying that it is because of the rampant destruction of the ecosystem, but I can notice a significant change in the micro-ecosystems in and around bangalore.

Is there something we can do?

Big Foot said...

Malls are a wonderful place to chill out! Who needs trees when you have McDonalds and KFC and CCD and XYZ under one roof? Plus they give discounts on Visa Cards these days!

They will get the parking space. Maybe for even 2000 cars. They will make a case of how many taxes they generate out of the mall and how additional parking space will lead to an increase in it and whoosh!

sameer said...

Sadly, true.

Personally, a not going to this Mall as far as possible. (And given the crazy traffic from anyplace to anyplace, its not too possible anyhow :D)

If we collectively give up on this insane urge to get into a mall on day one just cause they're open for business - to see the same stores - taste the same food - we'd do better. I guess part of the reason is also the lack of 'other things to do' that people face. Theatre is still small, and appeals to a few. In Bangalore, most 2-3 hour entertainment choices revolve around food/shopping. Can we change that ? Is there a startup waiting to happen in there ? Is that a value add cab operators/the BMTC can provide ? How about us cyclists getting more active in creating some of these options for ppl ?

Sherri said...

It's sad to see the "great mall" effect happening all over the world....when I hear of things like this happening...I feel a bit responsible...being American I feel like we are throwing our garbage everywhere. It sickens me. Apologies from me.

kosha said...

Well no builder develops anything without the demand. Its the citizens who have shown there is demand for such malls, that's when they have sprung up. Its us who has to stop, to draw the line. Its not Mantri or any other builders to be blamed. You should see the amount of people hoarding up in the mall. I have seen it. I still remember, that due to too many people, Mantri had to close the entry to the mall for few hours, you should have seen the mob outside waiting to get into the mall. And 90% of people inside the mall has come to just hang out, hardly any genuine buyers. This madness will stop if people stop being mad about hanging out in malls.

Bijesh said...

I am totally pissed that the govt uses "Mantri has spent so much" as an excuse to cut down trees, remove bus stops, destroy parks. Private enterprise over public well-being??

wonder how much money the "professor" has minted for his completely unscientific report.

Ramjee said...

Hi Sameer,

True.. unless we the people collectively boycott, things cannot change. We have to accept the reality that kosha pointed out. It's the people who go their in large numbers.

The main problem as you pointed out is lack of entertainment for 2-3hrs within reach. Hailing from the coastal parts of India, I really miss a beach. I know a bit of Hyderabad and there you have a well developed Hussain Sagar. Delhi has Yamuna etc.

What Bangalore lacks is a natural place where people can go for some time and chill. Cubbon park and Lalbagh exist but not the best of places.

A good idea where we as common people can start is get a lake(most important treasures of bangalore) to develop (not in commercial sense but in ecological). Once a sizable number of such eco-outlets exist, demand for malls will be limited (it can never go off).

eg. Can we adopt Agara tank in HSR layout and make it better. A cycling track, ensuring proper water harvesting is done, keeping it clean of both litter. ensuring the greenery grows!!

Any ideas on this front?

Elizee said...

Awful god awful Iam 50 years old and I went here. The shops were all bright and nice but the security made me hold 6 bags and dance to give them the purchase bill!
There was no place to sit and I was followed and disciplined by guards.
I had forgotten my parking number and they give no help to old women at the parking lot. They just smile when you do rounds to get the vehicle and by that time all the smoke from traffic outside engulfs you. There is no announcing system to help in the 2 floor parking lot.
Worse never go at weekends - anybody elbows you and anybody smokes to your face when you get out. Rickshaw-wallahs are a rip-off and it's a stampede. Worse the traffic around is clogged - you can't call an ambulance through the jam!