Chittagong adorns to host Cricket World Cup
Thursday, February 3, 2011 The Daily Star, Chittagong
Prabir Barua Chowdhury: The port city is being refurbished to welcome Cricket World Cup 2011. Like other cricket loving places of the world, the city is waiting for the cricket extravaganza. Through the Cricket World Cup, Bangladesh is introducing herself to the world as an organiser at an international level. As a host of two matches, the government and other related organisations took preparations to refurbish the city as a game village. Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) and Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) are doing the beautification and facelift works. CCC is implementing the project worth Tk 86 crore. Of the amount, it will provide Tk 17 crore from its own fund. Under this project, CCC is making three artificial fountains, three icons of Royal Bengal Tiger, steel-statue of Bangladesh team players and many billboards to welcome the players and guests. The fountains are being set up at GEC, Wasa and Tigerpass intersections and the icons of Royal Bengal Tiger in front of Premier University Wasa campus and two others in the foothill of Tigerpass road. Besides, CCC will erect a statue of Bangladesh team players in front of custom office, a model of five Sampans to be hanged with gas balloons at the estuary of Karnaphuli just at entrance of Shah Amanat International Airport. Another model of sampans will be set up at Jamal Khan intersection. To uphold the culture and heritage of Bangladesh, CCC also has planned to set up a mural at Tigerpass intersection. The city corporation will also decorate the roadsides of the port city. Under this project, the road from Sagorika, to GEC intersection will be colourfully painted. It requested residents and private and public offices to paint their houses and boundary walls. But, most of the building owners did not paint their houses till January 31. CCC Deputy Secretary Md Shamsuddhoa told The Daily Star that they deployed many teams to advance the programme. He, in this regard, said mayor visited different government offices to request them for painting. He hoped that they would be able to finish the work before the tournament begins. He said the roads to be used by the players and ICC officials at time of world cup will be recarpeted. Of these roads, carpeting of Jakir Hossain Road is complete and carpeting of Agrabad Excess Road, Port Connecting Road and Nimtoli area in front of customs house are going on. Most of the roads and dividers will be replenished with paints. They will repair the old dividers in some places and the dividers will have gardens. The city corporation has set up automatic traffic signalling system costing Tk 1 crore to bring a radical change in traffic system. To uphold the event, CCC will hoist 1,500 national flags of 14 participating countries in the main city streets and the roads will be decorated with festoons. To clean the city, CCC collected nine dump trucks from abroad and would engage around 400 temporary workers in this regard. Chief (acting) Sewerage Officer Shafiqual Islam told the Daily Star that they are ready to keep the city neat and clean. Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) oversees the Sagarika road renovation work of Tk 7.39 crore. The road is the main entrance to Jahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium. About the present condition of the road, Project Director Mahfuzur Rahman said construction of the road will be complete within February 5. Though CDA hoped to complete the road within February 15, sources said it will be difficult to complete the beautification in a month. Mahfuzur said they hope to complete the works by the first week of March.
World Cup Cricket
Chittagong city wears new look
Chittagong, a "sleeping beauty emerging from mists and water" as described by Chinese traveler-cum-poet Huen Tsang, is getting ready to welcome the cricket fans from around the world to witness the ICC World Cup matches, reports UNB.
The people of Chittagong, the second venue of the country for the mega sport events- World Cup Cricket 2011- want to utilise the unique opportunity to expose its culture, natural beauty, and potentiality to the millions of cricket lovers including global leaders and celebrities from across the globe.
Local authorities said they have been working with outmost sincerity to offer desirable accommodation, quick and hassle-free transportation, good food and healthy environment to the foreign guests during their stay in Chittagong.
Repair and beautification works in and around the port city ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup is going on in full swing and is expected to be completed by this month.
Organisers hoped that Chittagong's green hills and forests, its broad sandy beaches, and its fine cool climate and hospitality will definitely give an extra treat to the cricket fans.
When contacted, CCC secretary Shams-Ud-Doha informed that there has been lot of progress in most of the works including airport road expansion, carpeting on port-connecting road, car parking facilities adjacent to the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, painting footpaths, road dividers and roadside walls, and overall city beautification.
He said: "We'll finish painting footpaths, electric poles and roadside walls by February 10 as the first match (practice match) is scheduled to be held here on February 12. We also issued notice requesting the owners of the roadside buildings to paint their front side walls."
The DCC secretary further said that they have speeded up their routine works to keep the city neat and clean.
Bangladesh Cricket Board director Sirajuddin M Alamgir said that the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, the match venue, is almost ready for the three World Cup matches including one practice match.
"We hope all works inside the stadium including the pitch, logistics and media facilities will be completed by January 25. Around 20,000 spectators will be able to enjoy the matches comfortably," said Alamgir, also general secretary of Chittagong Divisional Krira Sangstha (CDKS).
He said they also kept the MA Aziz Stadium and the Chittagong Women Complex ready for the players for practice sessions. "It's up to their choice. If they want, they can make practice at the core venue (ZACS)."
About hotel accommodation, Alamgir said some 15 hotels including two major hotels-Hotel Peninsula and Agrabad Hotel-will be available to provide accommodation. "Players, team officials, camera crew and other VIPs will stay in Hotel Peninsula and Hotel Agrabad."
Chittagong police administration has taken all preparations to provide foreign players, ICC officials and guests VIP status and security.
Chittagong Metropolitan Police (CMP) will deploy additional 2,000 police at the airport, at six hotels and in around the ZACS to ensure foolproof security.
The CMP authorities have already issued a six-point directive to the selected six hotels and asked them to strictly abide by the directives.
Organisers expect that over 1,500 foreign guests would visit Chittagong apart from players and officials during the World Cup matches.
The opening ceremony of the ICC World Cup Cricket will take place at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka on February 17.