Those dismayed with having missed a chance to participate in ‘pedal power’, the unique green-energy initiative which lit up a segment of the palace during Dasara using human power, will soon have another opportunity to participate in the initiative.
Buoyed by an overwhelming public response to ‘pedal power’, the Palace Board has now decided to make the setup permanent. Under the initiative, 10 power-generating bicycles will be placed at Varaha Gate. The power produced will be used to light up some 300 bulbs which adorn the gate. The bicycles are due to be installed and operational in a fortnight.
Earlier, during the Dasara celebrations, the 10 bicycles had been installed near Varaha Gate at the Palace for nine days (October 16 to 24). Pedalled by more than 17,000 visitors, the bicycles had generated nearly 55,000 watts of electricity, said a spokesperson from a private mobile phone company, which had partnered with the Board in the initiative.
“The generated power helped light up the gate for four days,” said deputy director of the Board, T S Subramanya.
The bicycles were equipped with batteries to store the generated power, which was then coverted into alternative and direct current. If pedalled for an hour, some 150 watts of power was produced. As the authorities begin the work to instal the bicycles on a permanent basis, they have considered converting the power directly to alternative current. In addition, an awareness campaign will be held to promote cycling, a much-neglected mode of public transport.
Aside from the 10 bicycles, two bicycles made the rounds in the city to promote the initiative. “If all goes well with our plans to make the setup permanent, the number of bicycles both inside and outside the Palace will be increased,” Subramanya explained.
The intention here is to not only tap the footfalls at the palace, which receives some 34 lakh visitors per annum, but also promote cycling among the locals. The district administration itself is promoting cycling among government departments, he added.