The nightmarish experience that commuting on the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor had become for city residents could have been avoided had the Delhi government heeded to the recommendations of the Delhi Development Authority’s (DDA) technical committee made in 2005.
Following massive traffic congestion and some accidents reported on the 5.8 kilometre stretch since its trial began, the DDA has shot off a letter to Delhi Lieutenant Governor Tejendra Khanna last week stating that the agency had warned the government against these pitfalls.
In its letter, the DDA has said despite their recommendation, the government went ahead and concretised the corridor and also planned the corridor up to Pragati Maidan/ITO without obtaining the approval of detail proposal of the corridor.
DDA’s technical committee — which is responsible for approving all road infrastructure projects in the city — had in 2005 specifically recommended that the project should be taken on an experimental basis only. At that time, the BRT corridor was known as the High Capacity Bus System (HCBS).
“Since this is an experimental project, there is no need to resurface the roads by concretising as proposed, because this would cause considerable dislocation of the present traffic besides entailing substantial expenditure which can be avoided,” the committee had recommended.
The committee had also observed that stopping the buses at stops at the intersection as proposed may lead to over spilling of passenger/commuters alighting from buses on motor vehicle (MV) lane causing either congestion or accidents.
The technical committee had also advised against reserving one lane exclusively for buses and two lanes for all other motor vehicle in the initial stage of operation.
The committee had directed the government to give close and careful attention to the aspect of evacuation of any buses if they break down in the middle of the road.
“Had the government considered our recommendation, the present mess could have been avoided,” said a DDA official.