State assembly estimates committee, which inspected the BRTS corridor in Bhopal on Wednesday under the chairmanship of Omprakash Saklecha, said BRTS corridor in its present form will not serve its purpose, adding that three things are missing from the corridor.
“First, for the safety of the passengers, at least 20 footover bridges need to be built across the corridor so that passengers can use them to reach the central corridor.
Second, at the main crossings, there is need to build flyovers, otherwise the journey on the BRTS corridor will get slow.
Third, side lanes for two wheelers need to be built on both sides. The corridor is not just about the buses plying in the central lane. You have to also take care of people using private vehicles,” said Saklecha, while talking to the Hindustan Times after inspecting the corridor.
Saklecha stressed that the basic concept of the BRTS is a mass transportation system that is fast compared to the existing system. “If there are many crossings, the corridor will become slow and it will defeat the very purpose of BRTS,” he said.
Saklecha said they will present their report on the BRTS corridor project in the monsoon session of the state assembly.
“During my inspection of the BRTS corridor, I found some inadequacies which I am going to highlight in the report, especially in the context of the security of the people who will be using this corridor,” he said, adding, “but overall the corridor is fine, the width of the central lane is okay and it is better than Indore BRTS corridor, which we inspected on Tuesday.”
BRTS is a bus based transit system which allows higher speed, capacity and safety of buses by segregating them from other traffic on a roadway into a separated bus way. Of the 24-km BRTS corridor, there is no central bus lane on nearly six km stretch on Link Road 1 (3km) and in Old City near Sadar Manzil (3km).
There have been regular complaints about road accidents, damage to water supply pipes, damage to telephone and optic fibre lines, the dust emanating from the construction sites, and the general civic mess due to water inundating the dug up stretches along the corridor, especially during the rainy season.
Over the last four years, 119 people have died in over 1,600 road accidents on this road stretch.
However, Bhopal Municipal Corporation authorities deny this allegation, claiming that after the construction of the corridor, the rate of accidents and casualties had in fact come down. They claim that most of these cases, people have died due to drunk driving, rash driving and over speeding.