Integration with Metro and the railways may help Delhi Transport Corporation increase the occupancy of buses.
According to a transport department official, most routes are planned in a manner that it competes with Metro. But ideally, the bus should act as a feeder to Metro.
“Multi-modal integration is key to providing passenger comfort and providing seamless connectivity for transit services. Majority of Metro riders, almost 80% (people who access the Metro by foot, bus, cycle, cycle-rickshaw, e-rickshaw or auto-rickshaw), are the worst affected, due to lack of seamless connectivity. Last-mile connectivity and provision for safe and comfortable modal options for people must remain one of the primary objectives,” said a report prepared by the Ministry of Urban Development.
The report calls for an integrated bus route rationalisation plan, which ties the high demand routes to lower demand ones such that feeder facilities can be integrated.
“Direct pedestrian crossovers/skywalks connecting bus depot to Metro stations should be constructed so that people can walk to the Metro station directly,” the transport department official said.
Planning of multi-modal integration for phase-III Metro stations has almost been completed by Unified Traffic and Transportation Infrastructure (Planning and Engineering) Centre in consultation with stakeholders. Planning and implementation of MMI at phase-I and II stations needs to be taken up by DMRC in a phased manner.
To encourage use of public transport for long-distance travel, the committee has recommended use of railways and interstate bus services and integration with local intra-city public transport systems such as Metro and buses.
“This will allow the city to provide a viable alternative to motor vehicle users and decongest road space. Similarly, the Ring Railway System is currently one of the most under-utilised public transport systems of Delhi. It is still a very affordable mode of transport for long distance commuters due to its speed and low cost. But due to bad connectivity with station areas, lack of integration with Metro and bus stops, it is not considered a desirable option for long-distance commutes,” the report said.