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Karnataka to integrate hawkers in city infrastructure guideline

Last updated: 29 November, 2011
Bangalore, Nov 29, (PTI) : 15:47 IST

Karnataka government is keen to integrate street vendors and hawkers in formal infrastructure policies like stall and allocation and market or pedestrian and road facility design guidelines, key people behind a study said today.

A detailed analysis has already been carried in Bangalore in order to explore integration of the street hawkers and vendors into this formal infrastructure system.

Use of pedestrian micro-simulation for arriving at design guidelines for footpaths integrating street vendors and hawkers has been undertaken, according to co-investigators of the project -- Dr Ashish Verma and Dr Anjula Gurtoo from CiSTUP (Centre for infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation, and Urban Planning) Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.

"The government of Karnataka is keen to pursue a formal integration policy for street vendors and hawkers," Verma told PTI.

The two-member team explored pedestrian and facility policy guidelines for Bangalore city that considers and integrates provisions for hawkers and street vendors.

The total sample size for street vendors/hawkers was 871 and for the customers was 779.

The surveys clearly revealed the pattern of vending, the work related operational issues and concerns, and the 'entrepreneurial’ nature of their work.

Some of the significant results were: The nature of the social set up and work preferences revealed that 72 per cent of the respondents preferred to continue with vending as their primary business. Reasons were two fold, a) family tradition, and b) low set up cost.

Their work requirements varied with different types of localities and the choice of location was critical for business. The location was selected according to the demand for the goods they sold, ease of access to raw material and ease of access to transportation.

The space requirements revealed that about 77 per cent respondents wanted fixed space, of area of about 4-6 sq ft. More than 75 per cent of the respondents wanted formal government recognition, under some formal government institutional structure and a formal government designated space to do business.

Furthermore, 76 per cent wanted a sign board to display personal information, 47 per cent desired to join a vendor organisation and 25 per cent wanted to join a government association.

The customer survey reflected 83 per cent of the respondents positively accepting the presence of hawkers on pedestrian facilities as it was very convenient, time saving, and convenient for purchase of fresh and cheap goods. However, 53 per cent did not feel secure in the presence of street vendors.

To meet the second objective of exploring the facility design guidelines, a detailed study of pedestrian characteristics like speed, density and flow rate was conducted.

The study involved a quantitative assessment of the pedestrian facilities, identification of study area (areas of peak pedestrian flow with hawkers and vendors along the walkway) and data collection of pedestrian movement using video graphic surveys.

"The two policy guidelines together form the comprehensive direction for formal integration of the hawkers and street vendors in the city," Verma added.

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