In a first, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has planned a pedestrian-friendly initiative that may make certain streets in Mumbai open only to walkers.
In its revised draft Development Plan (DP) 2034, the civic body has reserved eight streets in six administrative wards as pedestrian-friendly. This means, certain streets will be dedicated to pedestrians only and closed to vehicles.
However, out of the 24 administrative wards in the city, only six have found a mention in the pedestrian-friendly streets’ provision. Experts termed this as a half-hearted attempt of the civic body to provide pedestrian-friendly streets.
There are two streets in A ward (Colaba, Churchgate and CST area) that have been marked, along with a mention of three streets in B ward (Mohammed Ali Road, Mandvi, Dongri areas). Even R central (Borivli area), M west (Chembur) and T ward (Mulund) have one each earmarked for pedestrianisation.
In C ward (areas of Marine Lines, Kalbadevi) – one of the six wards – no specific street has been reserved in the DP ward report as walk-only, but a provision of pedestrianisation has been introduced.
Experts added that there is no clarity in the DP report whether the streets will be fully pedestrianised 24/7 or will be partly pedestrianised ---- being shut for motorised transport only during peak hours.
The civic officials, however, said the provision will be subject to feasibility study, as an alternative route for the traffic movement will also have to be looked at during implementation.
Pankaj Joshi, executive director, Urban Design Research Institute, said, “It is a good initiative but because of lack of consistency in the planning, it seems like a half-hearted attempt. There should have been more streets near station areas that should have been included during planning, which doesn’t seem to be the case.”
One of the civic officials associated with the draft DP 2034 said, “It is a conceptual proposal that has been presented in the DP. However, the provisions will be subject to the feasibility study. After various suggestions from ward level, this concept was introduced and further suggestions of the citizens in this case will be welcomed. After the feasibility study there is also a possibility of increase in the number of streets to be pedestrianised.”
Pedestrianisation proposed for
A ward (Colaba, Churchgate and CST areas): Bora Bazaar Street and Perin Nariman Road
B ward (Mohammed Ali Road, Mandvi, Dongri areas):
1) Road no. 4 Nowroji Hill near Dongri Municipal Market
(2) Road no. 7 Nowroji Hill near Dongri Municipal Market and
(3) Road leading from Samantbhai Nanji Marg to Ramchandra Bhatt Marg
C ward (Marine Lines and Kalbadevi area): In wards with narrow lanes and is more of mixed-use activities, including retail markets and small-scale industries. This is proposed to be taken up after a detailed study.
R/central (Borivali): Market lane running between Borivli police station and municipal market at SV Road in Borivli west
M/west (Chembur): Chembur Govandi Road from Chembur station to junction below flyover (towards RC Marg). Subject to further study for feasibility.
T ward (Mulund): All roads in the ward are wide with a sparse tree line alongside, considering this nature of roads and the residential land use, pedestrianisation is proposed in Mulund west especially on Ramratan Trivedi Road near Mulund west railway station. Implementation of non-motorised transport in the ward is subject to detailed scientific study