The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) on Sunday gave the go-ahead for a new traffic circulation plan around the Civic Centre.
The plan lays emphasis on “equitable distribution” of road space around the new MCD headquarters.
The highlights of the new plan are all surface-level roads (and no flyovers), exclusive bus lanes, wider footpaths and ample scope for public transport.
The approval comes more than a month after the MCD first thought of "re-aligning" the traffic circulation pattern in the heart of Delhi to avoid separation of the Walled City from New Delhi.
MCD commissioner K.S. Mehra confirmed that the plan proposed by the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) had been approved.
"The plan was given the final go ahead in today's meeting and we are expecting to draw it up properly before June 2010 so that we are able to start work on the redevelopment of the Walled City," Mehra said.
There are several heritage monuments lining the roads surrounding the Civic Centre — Turkman Gate and Ajmeri Gate to name just two.
The earlier plan did not at all consider the fact that the area across the Aruna Asaf Ali Road is the heritage city Shahjahanabad.
Appreciating it as a "paradigm change" in the civic body's approach, INTACH Delhi chapter convenor A.G.K. Menon said: "All over the world planners are going for 'people-oriented' ways rather than 'car oriented'. With this plan, we are seeking to re-writing the history by which the British had wedged a divide between the old and the new Delhi."
The plan aims to integrate the Walled City area with the rest of the city, right up to the Connaught Place, he said.
"We have focused on three aspects — traffic should be slow, encouraging public transport and looking at congestion as a solution and not a problem," Menon said.