Exclusive bus lanes won't work in core City

Exclusive bus lanes won't work in core City

Interview

Urban planner and civic analyst Dr A S Kodandapani, in a conversation with
Rohith B R, says the authorities should do a scientific analysis of commuting needs of an ever-growing City before taking up new projects.

What are the main problems haunting City bus services?

As far as the coverage of areas is concerned, the services are by and large okay. However, when it comes to frequency of services and last-mile connectivity (here I mean services to the newly added zones to Bangalore), there are some hiccups.

Do you mean more buses need to be deployed from the core area to new Bangalore?

Increasing the number of buses is one step. A scientific analysis of the volume of passengers and routes involving the new Bangalore areas and the size of settlements needs to be studied through voters’ lists and Google maps. The BMTC should ensure that bus routes in suburbs cover the last settlement of considerable size.

What do you mean by scientific study of bus routes?

Every bus conductor maintains a trip sheet wherein the number of passengers in each stage of a bus route can be obtained. With this data in hand, an analysis of routes, in co-ordination with people settlements, need to be studied. This would help the BMTC to provide suitable frequency of buses in the corresponding routes.

What about the bus service problems in core areas. Are there problems in some pockets there, too?

I suggest that only smaller buses with shorter frequency be operated in the central areas, where congestion is more. With so many infrastructure projects going on in the City, there is very little space left for vehicle movement. The BMTC can select a few such routes and experiment with smaller buses.

What’s your take on dedicated bus lanes?

Creating exclusive bus lanes will not be possible in a built-up area. It is a waste of road space and difficult to enforce. This will only create more traffic congestion as the road space is not available for general traffic. New extensions like Shivarama Karanth Layout, which are yet to be formed, may provide for exclusive bus lanes.

What is the relevance of having more ring roads corresponding to bus connectivity?

Since Bangalore is developed with lot of radial roads, which extend from the heart of the City connecting various State and national highways, it is very important to have ring roads which act as a connecting network for commuters. Unfortunately, we have become very slow in developing ring roads as projects such as Peripheral Ring Road.

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