Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Roller-coaster ride to IT hub

Roller-coaster ride to IT hub

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Techies taking the road to the IT hub of Bengaluru, Whitefield, have a hellish experience. Traffic jams and vehicles stranded for up to a kilometre on either side of Benniganahalli Railway bridge have become the order of the day.

Neither the National Highways Authority of India nor the Railways are doing anything to bail out the people from the perennial traffic snarls. The railway bridge has become a major bottleneck and the large number of trucks heading from the Outer Ring Road and Central Silk Board to Hebbal and vice versa have been contributing to the traffic snarls.

The road bridge has become notorious for traffic jams even at 12 noon, an off peak hour and late in the night after 10 pm. Manning traffic at Benniganahalli is therefore proving an uphill task, says a traffic cop.

“I have been falling sick often due to pollution and smoke emitted from vehicles. I have been undergoing bronchitis related treatment. It is difficult for even two policmen to control the traffic here during peak hours,” he said, adding, “People have to think not twice but thrice before venturing onto Old Madras Road. Since no alternative road is available to reach the city, they have no option but to endure bumper-to-bumper traffic.” Since Benniganahalli abuts Old Madras Road (NH 4), living here has become a curse. The traffic gets particularly chaotic at Benniganahalli when movie goers come out of Chetan theatre.

KR Puram MLA Nandish Reddy admitted that the narrow bridge has been a nuisance for road users. He said a project had been approved by the NHAI at a cost of Rs 13.66 crore to build two vents, each 9 metres wide.

“The Railway authorities agreed to execute the work on their own by getting a special metal girder from Arakonam in Tamil Nadu. Money has been sanctioned to BWSSB and Bescom to shift utilities to ensure its speedy completion,” he said.

“If the authorities do not widen the railway bridge, it will prove to be a disaster.

The road under the bridge is battered and not fit for vehicles. The road to Ulsoor is meant to handle the huge number of vehicles. But when a multi-storey building under construction here is ready, traffic will become even more chaotic. Commuting on the Benniganahalli stretch to reach ITPL through Narayanapura is a huge problem,” said Samarth Kumar, a techie at ITPL.


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