While moves to shift all Government offices to Battaramulla are already underway, the Government this week revealed that it is presently mulling over the possibilities of converting the President’s House and the Temple Trees to heritage sites and tourist attractions through the Megapolis master-plan.
However, this move would only be finalized at the latter stage of phase-I of the Megapolis plan which would take place during the period from 2019 to 2020.
Secretary to the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development, Nihal Rupasinghe told Nation that all Government buildings including the official residences of the President and the Prime Minister would be relocated according to the plan.
He added that the Ministry had already called for proposals on how the official residences of the President and Prime Minister could be converted and used.
According to the Megapolis plan, Colombo would be converted into a commercial hub.
“Places like the Presidential Secretariat and the Prime Minister’s Secretariat are historically and politically significant. We have already taken steps to go for the ‘Requests for Proposals’ as to how these places can be used while working towards a ‘Commercial Hub concept’,” he said.
Meanwhile, Minister of Megapolis and Western Development, Champika Ranawaka said that currently they were working on relocating 31 ministries, 50 departments and 32 authorities and boards.
Ranawaka addressing the weekly Cabinet briefing said that the Ministry had already discussed the matter with the relevant institutions and added that they would be relocated to Battaramulla, which would be the Administrative City according to the Megapolis plan.
However, key institutions such as the Finance Ministry and several other commercially important institutions would remain in Colombo.