Freedom from road chaos, a desperate need

Freedom from road chaos, a desperate need

Freedom from road chaos, a desperate need

Still stuck in the first phase, Namma Metro's second phase will not get done any time soon. So what do people in areas not connected by any alternative modes of transport do? DH asked people living and commuting through some of the highly congested areas to talk about their travel woes.

Kavya Khashnobish studies at a renowned college in Koramangala. However, she stays in Marathahalli. Someone familiar with the areas in Bengaluru will know how hard travelling between these two areas is.

“The traffic in Marathahalli is incorrigible,” says Kavya. “Time management does not help. No matter how early I leave, I don’t get to college on time. There are many days when I miss the first hour.”

Traffic jams that seem to spring up out of nowhere is just one of transportation problems that Marathahalli is facing. There is no straight bus connecting Marathahalli and Koramangala. And the fact that there is no fixed schedule for the buses to come and go makes it very hard to travel.

Kavya herself catches a bus to a point midway, from where she shares an autorickshaw ride with her friend till her college.

For Sanchana, the problems are very similar. She lives in Bellandur, and travels to work on her two-wheeler. Since there is no Metro, there is no way for people to go about their business in the city except through roads.

For two-wheeler riders, the road provides its own share of nightmares – the first of which is ‘road rage.’ With the increase in traffic, people shouting at each other on the road has become a common sight in the city, and Bellandur is no exception to this rule.

“Roads used to be a little better earlier. Now the situation is very bad,” says Sanchana. She passes through Agara and St. John’s hospital on the way to work. “There are too many traffic signals on this route. This only makes the situation worse,” she adds.

The need is for better regulation of vehicular flow. “There are not enough cops. That would have really helped.” Sanchana’s opinion is shared by others – the police stand around the turns on roads and wait to catch people who jump signals, but they are not always willing to stand at the signals and regulate the traffic.

Ujwala, a techie, believes that the transportation system is not friendly towards IT employees. “It would have been good if there was Metro connectivity from Majestic to areas such as Koramangala and BTM Layout,” she says.

Ola and Uber, according to her, are too expensive. “BMTC buses get caught in the traffic too much. Two hours go just waiting in traffic everyday,” she says.

Clearly, commuters now feel that to beat the increasing road traffic in the city, especially in Sarjapur Road, Koramangala and surrounding areas, Metro is becoming a necessity. The emergence of several big IT firms in these areas has injected a sense of urgency for alternatives to road commute.

However, there are also a few residents who differ. Deeksha V, a resident of Sarjapur Road, while agreeing that the Metro can help travelling in a lot of ways, feels it could invite trouble too.

If Metro construction begins in the area, Deeksha is afraid things could get even more chaotic. “We have enough problems here already. If the metro construction also happens here, everyday life will be hit badly,” she says.