Experts suggest ‘integrated plan’ for city's mobility

Experts suggest ‘integrated plan’ for city's mobility

Pod taxis

(From left) Member of Citizens’ Action Forum N S Mukunda, urbanist V Ravichandar, IISc professor Ashish Verma, architect Naresh Narasimhan, theatre person Prakash Belawadi and urbanist Sonal Kulkarni at a discussion on ‘Pod taxis – Boon or Bane?’ at the St Joseph’s College of Commerce organised by Citizens for Bengaluru (CFB) on Saturday. DH Photo/B K Janardhan

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s idea of pod taxis and elevated corridors has triggered a debate.

A group of urban engineers and experts discussed the pros and cons of pod taxis and elevated corridors on Saturday at the St Joseph’s College for Commerce on Brigade Road. Experts suggested an ‘integrated plan’ that not just involves the government but also citizens.

Actor-filmmaker Prakash Belawadi said, “Citizens of the city are always kept in the dark about the government’s decisions. The feasibility report of the project prepared by the authorities concerned needs to be made public and the decisions should be taken in the presence of citizens and experts.”

‘A flawed project’

Ravichandar Venkataraman, CMD at Feedback Business Consulting Services Pvt Ltd, said, “Looks like the government’s intention is to favour only vehicles and not people. The idea of elevated corridors by the government is like prompting people to buy more vehicles. It is not going to solve any problem.”

He added, “The government says the elevated corridors are a good idea but it has never answered the how of it. They talk everything from how much they spend to how to they spend but never about their outcomes. The people in our government are over-worked and that’s why they come up with too many flawed projects.”

Pod taxis no option

Sonal S Kulkarni, a senior transport planner at Directorate of Urban Land Transport, said pod-taxis are not a viable option for metropolitan cities. “We see pod taxis in airports and amusement parks alone. Some cities have tried them but they were only pilot projects. It is very difficult to deploy pod taxis at a mass level. Tomorrow, once these get clogged, they will be like spaceships flying in the sky,” she said.

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