Tuesday, March 28, 2006

More promises: CM speaks of global Bangalore

More promises: CM speaks of global Bangalore
The Times of India

Bangalore: Chief minister H D Kumaraswamy dished out a virtual basket of promises for Bangalore city in the legislative assembly on Monday.

Though a few of his assurances, to date, have got off the paper, the assembly turned into yet another platform for him to announce his commitment towards ‘global’ Bangalore. He even opted to use corporate language like “local area traffic management plan’’ and “intelligent traffic management’’ through the newly announced B-trac project.

Affirming K Chandrashekar’s (Cong) contention that traffic in Bangalore was a crawling nightmare, Kumaraswamy said the proposed Rs 30 crore inner core Ring Road, widening of 45 major roads and new flyovers would go some way in easing “traffic stress.’’

“About 85 road asphalting packages are being tendered for the major arterial roads, which will be implemented over 400 km in Bangalore. Under the World Bank loan, 41 roads are being taken up. 29 IT/BT roads, major commercial roads, all major junctions are being reviewed and taken up to reduce traffic intensity,’’ the CM said.

If that is not enough, Kumaraswamy made some more positive noises: “All programmes to ease traffic congestion will be timebound.’’
He announced a 10-focal point ‘short-term’ programme: roads, public transport, vehicle stands, footpaths, traffic control and implementation, traffic education and awareness, the role of the public, road safety. These, he said, would be followed by the medium and long-term programmes.

He released breath-taking statistics: Bangalore’s vehicle population in 1996 was 10 lakh against 23 lakh in 2006; 900 new vehicles registered per day in Bangalore; major roads like Hosur road, Airport road, Bellary road, Mysore Road, Kanakapura Road, Old Madras Road and Tumkur Road are handling almost twice their designed capacity.

How to tackle these? More promises:

Flyovers at Jayadeva Hospital and Airport Road junctions will be completed on time; new flyovers at Tagore Circle, R V Teachers College and Yeshwantpur; Ramakrishna ashram flyover, once the locals are convinced on the need for it.
Metro Rail
Peripheral Outer Ring Road.
Repair of all major roads and drains.
992 new traffic policemen for better traffic management; if more needed, will be hired.
Strict traffic policing and fines; fines from 17 lakh cases in 2005 — Rs 20 crore — will be ploughed back into traffic management.
Traffic awareness camps.
Major roads made one-ways.
Road accidents down from 9,101 in 2004 to 7,575 in 2006.
Local area committees to implement local area traffic management plan.
7 pre-paid autorickshaw stands, more on the anvil.


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