Union urban development minister Venkaiah Naidu believes that better traffic management near Delhi Metro and flyover construction sites and implementation of differential parking charges are a few short-term measures that could decongest Delhi.
Talking to senior editors of Hindustan Times, Naidu said the measures had been decided after detailed discussions with various stakeholders such as the Delhi traffic police, municipal corporations, Public Works Department, Delhi Transport Corporation, Delhi Development Authority and Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC).
With the DMRC constructing 140 km of Metro network as part of its phase III expansion and nearly 10 new flyovers and elevated roads coming up, the effect is showing on the streets of Delhi. Despite efficient site management, many arterial roads remain clogged.
A case in point is the Ashram flyover, a perennially clogged intersection. The ongoing Metro construction and the repair of the flyover’s expansion joints have only added to its traffic nightmare. Though the traffic police claim that ample signages had been put up and officials stationed, the ground reality is much different.
The short-term measures suggested by the ministry include deploying more traffic marshals near the construction sites, proper temporary signages, temporary traffic lights and synchronisation to ease flow of traffic and diversion of heavy traffic at such sites.
In its six-week-long campaign ‘Unclog Delhi’, HT had suggested many such solutions to ease congestion on Delhi’s streets. One suggestion, which the ministry wants to implement, is congestion charging or differential parking charges.
Naidu said that rates for parking will be rationalised as Delhi has one of the lowest parking fees.
A proposal by South Delhi Municipal Corporation to rationalise parking rates had been sent to the standing committee and would be considered soon. Premium parking would be identified for parking of vehicles, he said.
A committee under the chairmanship of Bhure Lal constituted in 2012 had recommended rationalisation of parking charges.