Residents of Patiala can't get better New Year gift than a nod to a much-awaited city bus service project. The union ministry has sanctioned 50 buses for Patiala city under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNRUM) scheme.
The central sanctioning and monitoring committee sanctioned funds for setting up a bus depot, workshop and integrated transport system (ITS). As per the project details, of 50 buses, the Patiala Municipal Corporation will order 40 mini buses having capacity of 32 seats each, and 10 mini buses of 16 seats each. The estimated cost of the buses is worth Rs. 14.50 crore.
Under the project, of the total estimated cost, the central government will contribute 80% of share, while remaining 20% will be given by the state government.
PMC commissioner Parminder Singh Gill said the central government has also sanctioned Rs. 3 crore for the setting up of bus depot cum workshop in the city.
The central government has also approved Rs. 1.16 crore for the setting up of the ITS which includes the installation of global positioning system (GPS)-enabled software and including digital electronic boards and other ultra modern technology needed for transport system.
"We will outsource the task of running the buses to some private company and will float tenders regarding this by January-end. However, the first instalment of allocated funds will be issued once we submit mandatory documents to complete general and technical formalities pertaining to the implementation of the project within three months from now", Gill said.
He added that initially they had decided to pay outsource company as per kilometer scheme, while five acre land had been already earmarked near the Ghalauri gate for setting up depot cum workshop.
JNNURM project has been successfully running in Ludhiana, Amritsar and Jalandhar, while in Bathinda, it was launched last year.
Experts say the project would help people in commuting conveniently at cheaper rates and would cut down traffic substantially. Besides locals, the project will also provide transport facility to people residing within 8 km of the MC's jurisdiction.
Gill informed that the several routes had been decided, which will cater to the needs of lakhs of people.
"We have already mentioned detail regarding routes in DPR. The routes were finalised after consulting reputed urban transport company, which had prepared comprehensive mobility plan after taking note of volume of traffic in near future", he said.
However, he said that they were yet to decide on fares for different routes.
Total number of buses:
40 midi buses (32 seater each) including 15 air conditioned buses
10 mini buses (16 seater each)
Funds sanctioned for purchase of buses: Rs. 14.50 crore
Funds sanctioned for setting up depot cum workshop: Rs. 3 crore
Funds sanctioned for setting up ITS: 1.16 crore
SAD, BJP councillors at loggerheads
over road repair work, BJP councillor Rulda Singh submits resignation