Urban transport honours for the undeserving?

Ministry conferred the best performing project award to BRTS in 2009

shivani

Shivani Chaturvedi | November 27, 2010


Empty non-motorised vehicles lane on the BRTS stretch
Empty non-motorised vehicles lane on the BRTS stretch

The urban development ministry is all geared up to honour its 'best performing' transport projects under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission at the Urban Mobility India Conference and exhibition to be held here from December 3-5.

But if the past award-winners are anything to go by, the ministry sets a really low bar for projects to qualify. At the 2009 conference, the 'cycle and cycle-rickshaw' friendly Delhi Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor won the award. Under this project, the Delhi government had commssioned the first BRT corridor on a stretch of 14.6 km from Dr Ambedkar Nagar to Delhi Gate in 2005. A dedicated non motorised vehicle (NMV) lane was planned for the entire stretch. The condition on which the project was selected was that the NMV facility has an extremely high success rate and has achieved more than 98 percent usage without enforcement. The accident rate for cyclists on this stretch has fallen to zero in the last seven months. It was found that the traffic volume of NMVs increased by 70.7 percent from February 2008.

However, the above photographs are proof enough to show that the lanes are hardly used by the NMVs. In that case, how did this qualify for the award?

This year, too, a project named green bike-cycle sharing and feeder network of the Delhi integrated multi-modal transport system (DIMTS) at the BRT corridor from Ambedkar Nagar to Moolchand has been submitted with the IUT. This is one of the 28 proposals submitted this year. The first evaluation is done by the IUT and then the committee headed by former urban development secretary evaluates the project.

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