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HindustanTimes Sat,23 Aug 2014

Spend on existing roads before building new ones: experts

Prajakta Chavan Rane, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, August 23, 2013
First Published: 09:25 IST(23/8/2013) | Last Updated: 11:12 IST(23/8/2013)

Instead of using public funds for new projects, the state government should take measures to discipline traffic on existing roads, say transport experts.

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The Mumbai Transport Forum carried out a detailed study of problems on the Western Express Highway (WEH).

According to experts, simple measures such as ensuring traffic discipline and junction improvement could play help solve the congestion problem in the city.

The study has been sent to the Mumbai Transformation Support unit (MTSU), the state government, the civic body and the MMRDA for review.

“During our study we have found that a 13-km stretch from Bandra to Jogeshwari is the most critical. It comprises nine junctions under five flyovers, which are chronic spots. Any traffic improvement here could bring more lasting impact,” said Ashok Datar, transport analyst and member of the forum.

The forum has suggested that junctions under flyovers be improved by installing proper signage of turns, dos and don’ts for heavy vehicles, improving lane markings, good lighting and synchronisation of signal with close circuit television cameras so that any traffic violation could be penalised electronically.

“Lack of discipline on road is affecting public health. We need to create awareness about traffic rules and the penalties a violation will attract. This may control rash driving to an extent,” said Rish Agarwal, research fellow with Observer Research Foundation adding that this would cost far less than the amount needed to construct new roads.

Sulakshana Mahajan, senior consultant urban planning MTSU, said they were yet to study the proposal.

“We will have to check if it is possible to implement the suggestions or not. The forum will make a presentation on the proposal on Friday.”


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