Poor upkeep, encroachment cause jams on internal Delhi roads, says study

  • Soumya Pillai, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 25, 2016 23:51 IST
New Delhi: Heavy traffic jam at Malviya Nagar in New Delhi on Saturday. (Sanchit Khanna/Hindustan Times)

Poor maintenance, roadside parking and encroachment often lead to congestion on internal roads, found a study conducted by the Central Road Research Institute (CRRI).

The study has revealed that at times the internal roads are as clogged as several arterial roads in the city. The cause is not the rising number of vehicles, but the apathy of civic authorities.

Over 60 internal roads were observed for 15 days in April to find out the reasons behind the traffic jams. South Extension part-I, Malviya Nagar, CR Park, Bhogal (Jangpura Extension), and Lajpat Nagar part-IV topped the list of the most congested colonies.

“At Maharishi Marg (the market area) in Malviya Nagar, roadside parking is a major problem. The roads are dug up and illegal speed breakers slow down vehicles that can lead to jams,” the study read.

In several colonies, around Greater Kailash parts-I and II and CR Park, mindless construction of speed breakers caused many jams.

It was found that over 80% of these speed bumps are not built as per the CRRI guidelines.

“The location and the dimension of the speed breakers serve different purposes. You cannot randomly construct speed breakers on colony roads without following the basic rules. You need to paint these with reflective paint and install signs to warn drivers of the speed breakers ahead,” said Dr S Velmurugan, senior principal scientist, traffic engineering and safety division at CSIR-CRRI.

Read more: Delhi roads not safe for pedestrians, finds study

In the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi, out of the 33,000km road network, only 1,400km comprise arterial and sub-arterial roads. This carries about 70% of the total traffic load of the city.

Moreover, snarls are common around unauthorised colonies. There are many encroachments on the roads. The roads are narrow and do not have space to accommodate vehicles.

Velmurugan said traffic congestion on colony roads could be addressed by effective enforcement of land-use control policy.

There is also an urgent need to conceive traffic system management (TSM) such as one-way streets and parking prohibitions wherever possible, he said.

“Most agencies focus on main roads, neglecting local streets. For example, in South Extension, which is among the posh colonies of the city, roads have been dug up by agencies. The problem here is acute because the Ring Road is always congested, forcing commuters to take internal roads,” said Dr D Prasad, professor (transportation policy) at IIT Delhi.

A study released by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) in August last year had also highlighted the problem of clogged colony roads.

The study showed that traffic on colony roads in some south Delhi localities was three times their capacity. The study was conducted in three localities -- Alaknanda, CR Park and Greater Kailash. It highlighted the unprecedented congestion and lack of official planning in Delhi’s colonies.

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