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DN Road to be past perfect

The Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation has proposed making DN and MG Roads in Fort into pedestrian-only zones, reports Dhaval Kulkarni.

india Updated: Nov 24, 2006 15:42 IST

The Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) has proposed making DN and MG Roads in Fort into pedestrian-only zones (BEST buses may be the only exception) for at least two Sundays every month from 10 am to 7 pm from January 2007.

Traffic will be barred for a 2 km stretch from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) to Prince of Wales Museum. This area features 65 heritage structures, built in a variety of architectural styles, from Victorian Neo-Gothic to Indo-Saracenic and Neo-Classical.

According to MTDC Managing Director Bhusan Gagrani, “This will convert the roads into a tourist attraction and make people aware of the city’s heritage.

"Though the project will be implemented during the peak tourist season from October to March, we may try it out from January to March once permissions come through.”

The plan has been submitted for civic and traffic police approvals.

The closed roads will host stalls selling food, handicrafts, and play host to cultural and other performances, much like the way Rampart Row is closed to traffic during the Kala Ghoda Festival.

Versions of this plan exist all over Europe. For instance, Las Rambla in Barcelona is a popular pedestrian zone for shopping and entertainment. The Latin Quarter and Louvre Square in Paris are cultural zones, while Strøget in Copenhagen, Denmark, is the longest pedestrian shopping area in the world.

BMC officials were upbeat. Additional Municipal Commissioner R.A Rajeev said: “This is a good idea and it should work. We are considering it.” Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic) SC Mathur said he is in touch with MTDC about the plan.

dhaval.kulkarni@hindustantimes.com