A well connected, evenly spread, fast moving, comfortable and reliable public transport system is the need of the hour. Even an ordinary working class person who uses his two-wheeler or a car to his work is willing to shift to public transport if it offers good and reliable service.
Not just that, people are ready to spend a little more for a comfortable and well connected service which helps them cutting down on their travelling time.
These facts have come to the light in a recent study carried out by RITES for the Delhi Government on ‘Transport demand forecast study and development of an integrated road cum multi-modal public transport network for NCT of Delhi’.
According to the survey report, the percentage of people using public transport system has come down from 60 to 49 in the past few years.
Concerned with increasing travelling time and shrinking road network due to huge number of private cars and two-wheelers out on the Capital’s streets every day, most people want to shift to public transport system to commute to their workplace.
The survey report, however, said the residents of Delhi were disappointed with the current public transport system which is “erratic and unreliable”.
Ninety-five (95) per cent people said there should be enough number of buses on streets so that there is a bus on a route every five minutes. Sixty three per cent are willing to shift if parking space is provided at bus stops/stations. However, only six per cent of those surveyed said that they would only be interested in a public transport if it offered the comfort of air-conditioning.
“This is a preliminary survey report which RITES has given us. It will help in formulating plans on multi-modal transport system, frequency of buses and route allocation,” Delhi Transport Commissioner R.K. Verma said.
The survey also found that Delhiites are ready to pay more for a comfortable commute. Seventeen (17) per cent said they could pay 1.5 times of the current fare structure if they get a comfortable ride on a bus, metro or a tram. Ten (10) per cent said that they could even pay twice the existing fare for a public transport system which is accessible, reliable and comfortable.
People interviewed in the survey accepted that driving on the congested streets of the city was getting increasingly difficult.
The survey report said that traffic moves at just 22.2 kilometres per hour in Delhi during peak hours.
Sixty (60) per cent people who were surveyed are willing to shift to public transport if they save 10 minutes in their
travelling time and another 37 per cent will have no hesitation leaving behind their vehicles if the saving in time is 20 minutes.