More highrises a definite invitation to traffic chaos: Residents

If the city’s roads are already gridlocked, it is bound to get much worse. The high rise commercial and residential buildings coming up all across Bengaluru are a definite sign.

The rapid vertical growth is fuelling an unprecedented increase in vehicular numbers without corresponding improvement in road infrastructure.

The mushrooming of highrises, even if they have adequate parking spaces, is adding to the traffic chaos outside. Since parking space is available, residents tend to buy vehicles for their own use.

Buildings with huge basement parking facilities have given more prominence to parking but not to roads in front of the complexes. Besides, these roads tend to be too narrow. More vehicles are a definite invitation to severe traffic congestion.

Take, for instance, a high rise apartment and office complex coming up at the busy Goraguntepalya junction off Tumakuru road. The movement of construction trucks to the building site has already worsened the traffic bottleneck on the road. Thousands of private vehicles will be added once the complex is completed.

Citizens residing in the vicinity say the builders, a well-known construction company, have not given a thought to the traffic problems that the project will trigger. Puneeth Bhattacharya, who takes this route to go to Peenya Industrial area every day, says: “The real estate builders are not planning scientifically to utilize the public road without causing traffic trouble. I can’t imagine how it may be once the huge vehicle movement from this building starts.”

Puneeth says the trucks going in and out of this property are already causing traffic congestion at the Goraguntepalya signalled junction. “I can see heavy construction vehicles such as trucks going to this building, which causes huge traffic problems. They should at least move these vehicles during night time to avoid traffic snarls on this road,” he points out.

The same problem is being faced by citizens across the city, particularly on the outskirts where the real estate industry is booming. Hebbal and adjoining areas have more than 50 commercial and residential high rise buildings along the narrow stretches of Kempapura, Hebbal lake, Maruthi Nagar, near Esteem mall, Coffee Board Layout, Dasarahalli in Hebbal, Sahakar Nagar, Yelahanka New Town, Chikkaballapur Road and Doddaballapur Road.

Nalini Harish, who stays in an apartment in Sahakarnagar says: “I bought a flat in this area seven years back. But now, there are more than 10 apartments coming up with over five blocks and 500 to 1,000 flats in each. This will not only make this area overpopulated but also bring in a huge number of vehicles leading to heavy traffic congestion.”

There is also no scope for widening. Says Nalini, “What further stimulates the traffic pressure in these areas is the lack of scope for road expansion by the authorities. The need to utilize the existing roads for trouble-free movement of the vehicles is even more distinct.”

Yelahanka New Town resident Manoj Kumar says, “Kempapura is a developing area where many high rise apartments have come up. They have very fewer people occupied as of now. But once the city expands there will be many people coming here to stay. They will be using their vehicles which will create huge traffic here.

He feels civic agencies, particularly BBMP should take the rising traffic congestion triggered by highrises seriously. They should address this problem before it reaches alarming levels, says Kumar.

But the problem now appears insurmountable. Off Chikkaballapur Road, more than five high rises have sprung up without any plan for a proper road. A temporary, untarred kachha road is the only way to access an apartment.

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