We’re forced to move like snails

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BANGALORE, September 14:  With the number of vehicles in Bangalore city touching about 45 lakh, 90 per cent of which are private ones, the congestion on the roads has resulted in Bangaloreans spending enormous amounts of time on travel.

The congestion index, which should be zero in the ideal condition of vehicles plying at the desirable speed of 40 kmph, was 0.33 in 2008 and increased to 0.37 in 2011 when Bangalore had 37 lakh vehicles, according to Bangalore Mobility Indicators 2011, conducted by the Directorate of Urban Land Transport.

Consequent to the increased congestion, the average speed of vehicles has also lowered when compared to the desirable speed. While the average speed of private vehicles was 25 kmph that of public transport (Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation buses) was just 15 kmph.

The total delay by vehicle hours was 21,47,909; that of person hours was 45,30,872 and delay per vehicle was at least 30 minutes. Even the travel time index, which is zero in the ideal situation of vehicles moving at 40 kmph, increased from 1.57 in 2008 to 1.63 in 2011, indicating extra time spent on roads.

Of late, thousands of vehicles pile up on arterial roads in the central business district, including J.C. Road, N.R. Road, Hudson Circle, K.G. Road, Seshadri Road, K.R. Circle and Nrupathunga Road. This piling up, which was restricted to peak hours earlier, has been occurring throughout the day irrespective of the peak and off-peak hours.

At the same time, the nine major corridors — Tumkur Road, Magadi Road, Mysore Road, Kanakapura Road, Bannerghatta Road, Hosur Road, Sarjapur Road, HAL Airport Road, Old Madras Road and Bellary Road — which connect Bangalore with its suburbs and other parts of the State too have been witnessing slow movement of vehicles.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic) B. Dayanand attributed the recent traffic hold-ups to severely damaged roads due to heavy rain. He told The Hindu that the vehicular movement has become slow across the city because of battered roads. Once the roads are restored, the situation is expected to improve. At the same time, the increase in the number of private vehicles has also contributed to the clogging of roads, he admitted.

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