Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad among 11 winners of govt’s ‘Streets for People Challenge’

Published on Jan 19, 2022 10:36 PM IST
Under the challenge, 38 cites had piloted re-imaginations of an important street each by prioritising them for pedestrians
Pune won the accolades for reclaiming space along several roads to create safe and exciting ‘experience zones’ for all citizens. (HT FILE PHOTO)
Pune won the accolades for reclaiming space along several roads to create safe and exciting ‘experience zones’ for all citizens. (HT FILE PHOTO)
ByAbhay Khairnar

PUNE The Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry on Tuesday said 11 cities, including Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad , have been selected as the winners of the ‘Streets for People Challenge’ for their pilot projects to make roads more pedestrian-friendly

In a statement, the ministry said that under the challenge, 38 cites had piloted re-imaginations of an important street each by prioritising them for pedestrians.

Pune city constructed smart roads on JM road, FC road, Baner and Aundh areas which were appreciated at the national level. Pune won the accolades for reclaiming space along several roads to create safe and exciting ‘experience zones’ for all citizens. The city activated these edges by painting the spaces, conducting laughter yoga sessions, music sessions and introducing kids play areas. Going ahead, the city plans to build wider footpaths and install street furniture at different locations, said officials.

Pimpri-Chinchwad was hailed as the walking and cycling champion for reclaiming space from carriageway for segregated cycle lanes and footpaths. The city worked closely with their street design consultants to further their city-wide Harit Setu Masterplan, connecting green spaces across the city.

Pune mayor Murlidhar Mohol said, “For the past many years we are taking efforts to make roads pedestrian friendly. It has now been appreciated at the national level and other cities in Maharashtra are following Pune’s road construction plan. We are planning to extend these schemes on various roads in the city and improve it by considering local needs.”

“Recently, PMC celebrated pedestrian day which is an innovative concept. Even other cities are trying to celebrate pedestrain day after Pune. As the central government has appreciated our work, it proves that we are going in the right direction. Pune has given direction to the nation in various social and political movement, now iit has taken a lead in urban planning as well,” added Mohol.

In a competition that was open to 113 smart cities, 38 cities piloted re-imagination of an important street each by prioritising them for pedestrians. The Streets for People Challenge required cities redesign their streets as public spaces through low-cost innovative measures making them safe for citizens, more particularly senior citizens and children.

Of the 38 cities who submitted their proposal 11 cities – Aurangabad, Bengaluru, Gurugram, Kochi, Kohima, Nagpur, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Pune, Udaipur, Ujjain and Vijayawada were selected as pioneers for showcasing creative on ground transformation and extensive collaboration with citizens.

The 11 cities that have won the Statge I of the Streets for People Challenge will receive cash award of 50 lakhs. In Stage 2, these cities will use their learnings and continue to work towards a vision for “Healthy Streets”—integrating walking, cycling, and public transport to make streets safe and convenient for all, said officials.

Meanwhile, the centre has announced Season Two of the Streets for People Challenge. Any smart city, capital city or a city with a population above 5 lakhs, other than the 11 already selected, can take part in the competition.

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