Bengaluru: Pedestrians using footpath near Ashoka Pillar, Jayanagar have to contend with many challenges. They include broken slabs, garbage, encroachment by hawkers and parked vehicles. Quite often pedestrians are forced to use the road and risk their lives from being hit by speeding vehicles
As per the guidelines laid down by Indian Road Congress (IRC), it is imperative to have footpaths with the height of 150 mm on each side. It further says that they should be designed in such a way that there is sufficient space for vending outside the pedestrian zone.
The city officials seem to have turned a blind eye on to this specification near Ashoka Pillar, Jayanagar.
Furious at the officials, Masood Alam, a software expert, said, “It is harrowing for us to walk on the footpath. It is not only broken but dirty. You will find piles of garbage left unattended for several days.”
The broken slabs and the debris covering half of the sideways force the pedestrians to step into the road, which could be fatal given the speed with which vehicles ply.
“Nowadays, it is a common sight to see motorists riding bikes on the footpaths to avoid traffic congestion. Footpaths are not meant to ride bikes. It not only disturbs pedestrians, but also weaken the slabs. The worst thing is that the administration does not care,” says Deepak Varanwal, sales executive.
Not only the vendors but the footpaths are also encroached by cars and bikes for parking. The hotels situated around the area have allowed the visitors park to their vehicles in a ‘no parking’ zone.
“The major problem is with the design of the footpath. At several places it is uneven and parking narrows down the size of the footpath. I can understand the reason behind not cutting down the trees which too obstructs the path of the pedestrians, but I am unable to gauge the reason behind not stopping the vehicles from parking on the sideways. Moreover, it is brazen to park the vehicle despite the no parking signboard,” said Sadik Alam, who has been residing at Jayanagar for the past six years.
On being asked about the problems faced by pedestrians due to encroachment by the vendors and the garbage left behind by the food stalls, Masood said, “We need to have an alternate plan for the vendors. Where will they go if they are asked to leave the footpaths? But the pedestrians cannot take to roads when walkways are there. So, the footpaths have to be widened so that vendors and pedestrians can have their own space.”
Nearly all the residents, Deccan Chronicle spoke to are of the opinion that government run public toilets and transformers should be shifted or made in such a way that they do not obstruct the path of the pedestrians.
Broken slabs to be replaced soon: Corporator Gangambike
Why are the footpaths in a dilapidated condition?
We have called the engineers to start working on it. The work to replace broken slabs will be initiated soon. The issue of the broken footpaths around Ashoka Pillar is in our notice.
There is an encroachment on the walkway by the vendor and vehicles. Why?
“There is a newly-built hotel and its customer’s park their vehicles. It has already been served with notice. If it does not comply, we will take action. When the BBMP comes for surprise raids, they do not find any vehicles. New fines are introduced by the BBMP under which if any vehicle is found parking on the sideway, the owners will be penalised.
Why heaps of garbage on the footpath is left unattended?
The garbage is thrown by the residents staying around the area. It is not left unattended but after the cleaning, the situation is back to square. So, we will try to find a permanent solution. There are times when the canal work undertaken by the BWSSB usually ends up in piling up of debris on the footpaths.