The nearly five lakh vehicles that ply in Noida during rush hours have long been clogging the city’s seven major intersections. This is because there are only 122 traffic police personnel to man the heavy vehicular flow at these intersections. Apart from this, rampant violation of road safety norms, encroachments and unauthorised parking have been adding to the mess.
More than three years ago, the Noida authority had constructed an underpass on the Dadri-Surajpur Chhalera Road near the Sector 37 intersection and a flyover from Sector 44 to Chhalera to bypass the intersection. But the facilities have not helped improve the situation at the Sector 37 intersection, which is the largest in the city.
“There is no provision for pedestrians coming from Phase 2, Bhangel and Surajpur to walk down the Sector 37 intersection to reach the Botanical Garden Metro station. They have to cut through moving traffic to cross the intersection. A subway is a must here,” said Randhir Singh, a resident of Bhangel.
Also, the road leading to Kalindi Kunj at the intersection also needs to be barricaded for buses, cabs and autorickshaws, which pick up and drop passengers at unauthorised spots. This has made the crossing a major traffic bottleneck, especially for the vehicles heading west.
The popular Atta market opposite Sector 18 — a one stop shopping hub — has its vendors encroaching upon the pavements and visitors parking their vehicles along the already narrow roads. The problem gets compounded because of the absence of an authorised parking lot at the adjoining Metro station. This means, metro commuters end up parking their vehicles on the road near the market. Poor enforcement of laws has allowed buses to ply on the road adjoining the market.
As for the intersection near the Indian Oil building in Sector 1, traffic expert and ex-director of Central Road Research Institute, Prof PK Sikdar, said, “It is a jungle raj here. All kinds of road users, particularly pedestrians and autorickshaw drivers, flout traffic rules at the junction. Traffic police personnel are mute spectators to the mess. There is a metro station at the intersection. A skywalk may help ease the congestion.”
However, urban planners have not incorporated traffic engineering while planning Noida, Sikdar said. “Traffic engineering is a science and it does not come just like that. Piecemeal solutions will provide temporary relief. Traffic facilities should be forgiving,” he said.
According to Sandeep Chandra, Noida authority’s traffic cell head, said that in order to ensure pedestrians’ safety skywalks have been proposed at the roundabout in Sector 1 and from the Sector 18 Metro station to Botanical Garden Metro station. He also said the proposed metro rail line from Noida City Centre to Model Town near NH 24 will decongest two intersections, Mamoora Chowk and Fortis Hospital, in a couple of years. The metro service is likely to be operational by the end of 2017.
Additionally, the existing foot over bridge at Mamoora Chowk will be replaced by a subway.