Plough 19,000 crore corridor money to speed up slow metro work

The project will also waste Rs 19,000 crore on a facility for just one million car owners with benefits to no one else.

Trustees, Bangalore Environment Trust (BET): The elevated corridors East-West and North-South project can be seen as wasteful and redundant. The project will also waste Rs 19,000 crore on a facility for just one million car owners with benefits to no one else. This same Rs 19000 crore can be ploughed into Metro to speed up the slow pace of Metro work.

Detailed simulation and modelling studies carried out at IISc show that elevated roads result in 11% increase in PM (particulate matter) pollution by 2030, over the current pollution levels. But if Metro is built instead of elevated roads, there will be 29% drop in PM levels and a 29% drop in CO2 emissions.

The study also shows that the reduction in average travel times with elevated roads will be only 8%, while with Metro built along these routes, the travel times will be reduced by 40% as compared to the current situation.

The elevated road system needs 50+ up and down ramps for access. These ramps will form choke points all over the city since hundreds of cars will queue up to get on the elevated roads or get off them. These cars will be held up by the existing traffic at grade level. Such effects are already visible on the 9 km elevated roads to Electronic City where on busy days, it takes about 10 minutes to reach grade level from the end of the road at Begur Junction.

‘Elevated roads bad’
Elevated roads do not benefit bus commuters at all, since buses cannot be run on such roads, as passengers cannot be dropped off at elevated levels. Further, elevated roads deliver NO BENEFIT at all for 60% commuters since they are all pedestrians or non-car users. The benefits of elevated roads will be felt only by one million users who are privileged to own cars. Increase in the number of concrete pillars for the project will only create more heat islands across the city and raise temperatures to much higher levels. Elevated roads only encourage people to use cars and this will result in lower footfalls in the Metro. Unless the Metro is used to full capacity, the investment in such a huge project will go waste.

‘Trees being felled’
The city is already losing many hundreds of trees to Metro, road widening and similar projects. The elevated roads project will result in some 3,500-4,000 additional trees being felled. Such a huge loss of trees will only increase street temperatures and increase particulate pollution. With the loss of trees, the essential character of our city will be lost. With many thousands of pillars required for the elevated roads, for benefiting just about 1 million car users, the remaining 9 million people of the city will have to see their city avenues disfigured and famous landmarks blocked from view when travelling along our roads.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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