Friday, January 22, 2010

BUS BHARO

BUS BHARO
The BMTC is reaching out to techies working in Electronics City and ITPB to promote public transport and decongest Hosur Road and Old Airport Road
SUCHITH KIDIYOOR


If you are a techie working in Electronics City or ITPB, don’t be surprised when you receive an email seeking suggestions as part of the Bus Day campaign being organised by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC). The campaign, aimed at generating awareness on public transport as a commuting choice, starts on Feb 4 and will continue on every first Thursday of the month throughout the year. Praja, a web portal, Outer Ring Road Companies Association (ORRCA) and Electronics City Industries Association (ELCIA), which are supporting the BMTC in the campaign, have already sent the questionnaire to 120 companies in Electronics City, ITPB and outer ring road area. Vishwanath, general secretary of ORRCA, told Bangalore Mirror, “There are 23 companies under our association. Approximately one lakh employees are working in these companies. Of these, around 60,000 use company vehicles every day. We are approaching the rest of the employees to use BMTC buses on the first Thursday of every month. We are also organising a marathon on Feb 6 to create awareness among the people to follow traffic rules and use public transport for commuting.” To publicise the event, the association has put up banners inside the company premises. “We have also sent out questionnaires to the techies seeking their suggestions on formulating routes and operating more buses. We are expecting responses from around two lakh techies.” The questionnaire contains eight questions, including how the techies usually travel, whether they use BMTC buses and if not, what are the reasons. The participants are also asked to mention the usual route they take and the time at which they leave for work and return. The Bus Day campaign is aimed at easing the traffic on two main corridors of the city - Hosur Road and Old Airport Road. Every day, around 4,000 cars and 3,000 two-wheelers ply on Hosur Road.
Advantages of travelling
in BMTC buses Productive use of commuting time (techies can use laptops to do office work in Volvo buses) Contribute to congestion-free roads, and lowering pollution level Cheaper than private modes of transport Much safer than private vehicles Save on petrol REACHING OUT
Khader Basha Syed, an associate of Praja, a Bangalore based, a online civic activism portal said, “We are reaching out to companies, individuals, activists , individually as well as collectively. We are contacting them over the phone and emails. So far the response has been good .One major concern is availability of route and schedule information. Unfortunately due to some reasons, BMTC’s website is not providing the information that would be helpful to public in planning their commute. In order to mitigate the problem, Praja will be publishing a route map with route numbers that run on these selected corridors. There are also plans to provide tools on the Praja website to obtain route info interactively.”
“We are hoping that after the Feb 4 event, everyone concerned will take notice of these shortcomings of traffic related problems and take steps to address the issues holistically. It is time to address the system in a multi-dimension approach rather than single dimension which has been the case so far,” he added.

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