‘Link elevated corridor with public transport’

‘Link elevated corridor with public transport’

Giving final touches to the detailed feasibility report (DFR) on the ambitious elevated corridor project, the state government on Saturday held a high-level meeting with stakeholders and project consultants seeking opinions and suggestions. The meeting was attended by officials of BMTC, BMRCL and DULT, who pushed for seamless integration of public transport.

Officials who took part in the meeting revealed to DH that all the suggestions that were made during the meeting were considered valid and will be included in the plan by tweaking it accordingly. Sources revealed that a draft of DFR has already been prepared by roping in firms like AECOM, Deloitte and InfraSupport. A hybrid annuity financial analysis of the project besides risk allocation factors were also presented during the meeting.

Refusing to be quoted, a Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation official said, “We suggested that there should be a dedicated lane for buses. At the descending ramps, there should be a dedicated bus bay or wider space to accommodate buses. Existing elevated corridors are choked with traffic. The dedicated lane will prevent this.”

A senior official from the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) said, “Connectivity must include all aspects from the first-mile to the last-mile. Starting from own vehicle to buses and to Metro or it could be the other way around. Hence, the elevated roads must be linked to the Metro with ample parking space and bus bays so that seamless connectivity is established.”

Another official from the Department of Urban Land Transport revealed, “Of the 60 lakh daily commuters in Bengaluru, BMTC carries around 30 lakh passengers and the Metro caters to five lakh passengers. But how would the rest travel? There is no scope for the widening of roads and perhaps the only way out is to go vertical by having an elevated corridor.

“However, if we integrate the corridor with public transport, more people will shift to public transport and thereby reduce the use of personal vehicles,” the official said.

Urban expert Ashwin Mahesh said that it is important to include projects of this magnitude in Revised Masterplan. “There should be a clear understanding of why people are travelling long distances and also where people are living and where new jobs are being created. This is what attracts population and projects should be designed according to it and ways of strengthening public transport should be thought of. It should be holistic, rather than providing mobility solutions,” said Mahesh.

According to the draft, the project is expected to be taken up in five different phases with a budget outlay of about Rs 31,000 crore.

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