Despite attempts by the highway authority to expand the Kherki Daula toll plaza, traffic congestion persists and the problem is exacerbated by the movement of heavy vehicles that ferry industrial products from IMT Manesar and Udyog Vihar to various parts of the country.
Commercial trucks that carry auto-parts, cars and motorcycles are parked on the service lanes of the expressway, particularly in the evening, leading to traffic jams.
People who recently shifted to the new sectors beyond Kherki Daula say that evenings, particularly after 7pm, are troublesome as trucks and containers wait in the service lanes until the no-entry to Gurgaon is relaxed after 8:30pm.
Sector 82 resident Santosh Dubey, who recently shifted to a new apartment beyond the toll plaza, said that trucks and containers parked on both sides of expressway at Kherki Daula toll plaza makes it difficult for people to travel to Gurgaon. “In the morning and afternoon, we endure jams but the situation becomes impossible in the evening as it is scary to drive around these heavy trucks,” Dubey says.
While the problems are accentuated because of the faulty design and planning, a major problem at Kherki Daula toll plaza is also its location at the city border.
Residents of Kherki Daula village, who are also victims of the daily jams, say that trucks should have been allotted parking space near the toll plaza when the entry of commercial heavy vehicles to the city was restricted.
“The trucks are parked on the service roads and there are no amenities for drivers,” Dilip Yadav, a Kherki Daula resident, said.
As of now, there are 22 lanes at the toll plaza and it is inadequate for over one lakh vehicles that use the expressway every day.
Apart from the problems caused by illegally parked trucks, the Kherki Daula plaza also suffers basic design flaws. Transport expert Dr Sewa Ram says that there is need for better channelisation of traffic and improved signage. Besides, wrong side traffic should also be stopped. The movement of shared autos and maxi-cabs between Gurgaon and Manesar also add to the congestion.
The highway authority’s effort to expand the Kherki Daula toll plaza has also not been successful for the last eight years as land needed for expansion is under litigation. However, highway officials believe that they are close to striking a deal as both litigants have agreed to enter into a lease agreement with the NHAI.
“We will receive the lease documents from the litigants who are ready to lease the land till the time the dispute is settled,” highway administrator Ashok Sharma said. Once the document is received, the NHAI will get an expert to calculate the estimated rent and an agreement will be signed between the three parties, paving way for the expansion of Kherki Daula toll plaza.
Sharma is hopeful that problems at the toll will be under control once the plaza is expanded.