Wednesday, October 14, 2009

NIGHTMARISH DRIVE

NIGHTMARISH DRIVE
HEMANTH KASHYAP


BSNL is digging up the Residency Road-Museum Road junction to lay cables and this arterial road, a nightmare during daily peak hours, has now become literally impassable. The labourers have dug up a trench three-feet wide on the road and deposited the mud on the road itself. As a result, the three or four lane space normally available on this road has shrunk to that of a single lane.
BIDARI GETS STUCK
On Monday, it took Police Commissioner Shankar M Bidari himself more than half-an-hour to negotiate a half kilometre stretch. You can imagine the ordinary driver’s woes then. It was bumper-to-bumper traffic for hours on end on Richmond Road flyover, Residency Road, Museum Road, Opera junction, St Marks Road, Vittal Mallya Road, Brigade Road and surrounding areas. All this due to cable laying work near Prof Ashirvadam Circle (St Joseph’s College).
Traffic police do not expect any improvement in vehicular movement on this road for at least a week. They want citizens to avoid Residency Road and take other roads to reach their destinations.
PASSING THE BUCK
Speaking to Bangalore Mirror, Additional Commissioner (Traffic) Praveen Sood said, “Before taking up cable laying work, BSNL authorities told us that it will take just two days. It appears that they may not complete the work before a week. We told them to take up digging and cable laying during night and employ more labourers to complete the work at the earliest. But they are doing the work during day time also and work is not progressing as fast as we want to. We cannot do much. We cannot tell them to stop the work. Cable laying is essential for better connectivity. Citizens should co-operate for a while.’’
24/7 WORK IS ON
Easier said than done. There are 16 well-known schools in the locality. Children come here either using public transport or their own transport. Similarly, a large number of private firms, eateries, watering holes, clinics, gyms and star hotels are located in and around this road.
Everyone has just one request: “Why don’t they take up such work during night. It will cause less inconvenience to the masses,” a citizen who was caught in a two-hour traffic jam said. But Sood chooses to disagree. “The work cannot be done only during night. It has to be started and completed in one go during day and night,” he said.
When contacted, a BSNL official sent back a polite message saying he was busy in a meeting. VITTAL MALLYA ROAD AFFECTED
As vehicles crawled on Residency Road, the scene at neighbouring Vittal Mallya Road and Kasturba Road was no different. The upscale Vittal Mallya Road which is undergoing repair work was closed for traffic after earth caved in due to water leakage from a 40-year-old pipe on Tuesday evening.
This aggravated trouble at the Vittal Mallya Road-Kasturba Road intersection near Coffee Day Square (Old Tiffany’s junction) where a severe traffic jam made the job of traffic police tougher during evening peak hours.
The road which was twoway earlier, became one-way to facilitate the road repair work. The water leakage resulted in the closure of the one-way also.

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