Monday, May 28, 2007

Dedicated auto lanes could hobble traffic, not help it

Dedicated auto lanes could hobble traffic, not help it
By Vicky Nanjappa, DH News Service,Bangalore:
Traffic expert M N Sreehari says DALs are going to be just 500 metres, and unless they are at least 3 to 4 km, they won't make sense


How do you discipline autorickshaw drivers in the City, known for their reckless ways? Make them get into dedicated auto lanes (DALs), is the traffic police’s answer. But the question is whether a DAL system works in a city where the roads are narrow.
Sample the DAL being laid from the MG Statue to near Minsk Square. The road is four-lane and a bus-shelter is located on either side.
The buses will have no option but to get into the DAL to stop at the shelters. While the police argue that the lanes would help streamline traffic, traffic experts and the commuting public say it is not a good idea in a city like Bangalore.
Traffic expert M N Sreehari says DALs are going to be just 500 metres, and unless they are at least 3 to 4 km, they won’t make sense. With short-distance lanes, the autos would have to cut into the main road at the end of the DALs, posing more problems to the traffic flow.
Says Shyam Sundar, a motorist: “Only recently the road was asphalted and now they have again started banging nails into the road. If one of the nails were to come out, it would cause damage to vehicle tyres. Also, the short DALs won’t do”.

‘Fatal’ dividers
The cement dividers do not have reflectors on them. This could prove fatal to vehicle-users if they bump into them at a good speed, the auto drivers point out. As Mr Sreehari asks, why should there be frequent changes of lanes or directions? “Since the DALs are on a trial basis, why are the police putting up cement dividers and wasting money? They could have used a cat’s eye or plastic poles instead, to check whether DALs work or not”.
The traffic police insist that with DALs, haphazard movement of autos could be curtailed.
They would reduce congestion, and broader roads would be identified to introduce the DALs.
Instead of penalising auto drivers for violating rules, they should be educated on these rules, they say. There are nearly 90,000 autos registered with RTOs in the City.
Moving autos to suburbs could be a long-term solution, say experts.

1 Comments:

At Tuesday, May 29, 2007 at 1:21:00 PM GMT+5:30, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't quite understand the need for a physically delineated dedicated lane for autos. Just make a rule that autos should stick to the left most (slowest) lane. Any violation should be fined. Other types of vehicles should also be allowed to use the left most lane instead of dedicating it for autos.

 

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