Bicycle tracks don’t seem to be on the priority list of the Chandigarh municipal corporation. Most of these tracks, constructed to make city as cyclist-friendly, are dotted with potholes and are occupied by encroachers.
Vehicles can also be seen parked on the cycle tracks in many Sectors across the city. Besides, people also dump construction material on these tracks rendering them useless for cyclists.
The city is working on the Smart City project and is on its way to promote cycling in the city, but the authorities have failed to maintain cycle tracks. Even morning walkers avoid these tracks owing to their bad condition. The condition of these tracks is worse in Sectors 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 27, 29, 36 and 37. Large potholes on tracks pose a danger to cyclists. The tracks which were laid for the safety of bicycle riders have turned perilous. The tracks need proper carpeting with streetlights and separation at rotaries.
A regular cyclist, Amisha Gupta of Sector 20, said: “Most of the cycle tracks in the city are in a bad shape. Though city resident have taken to cycling following the Smart City project, the authorities have failed to maintain the tracks. It’s been three years since I started cycling, but the condition of these tracks have gone from bad to worse.”
Sarvar Hasib of Sector 23 said: “What’s the point of promoting cycling when the city lacks good cycling tracks. We cannot go out for cycling in the evening as none of these tracks have lights. These tracks look scary at night and even pedestrians avoid taking these paths.”
Although the authorities have failed to upkeep the cycle tracks, the administration is planning more such paths near the bus stand. Municipal corporation chief engineer Mukesh Anand said: “Most of the cycle tracks in the city have been recarpeted and we are maintaining them accordingly, but the problem is that these cycle tracks are underused. A few cyclists use these tracks.”
“I have asked the authorities to chalk out a plan to install streetlights on cycle tracks, “he added.