From school grounds to bus depots, experts on Thursday said congestion on Delhi roads could be reduced by optimising existing land parcels to meet the city’s parking demand.Discussing issues related to mobility at a day-long conference organised by the World Resources Institute (WRI), experts concluded that encroachment on roads is one of the main reasons why traffic moves at a snail’s pace — even during off-peak hours — in the national capital.“I have been travelling a lot in buses of Delhi and Gurugram over the last three days. On one such day, it rained heavily and passengers of the bus I was travelling in had to get drenched — not because there was no bus stand for people to de-board but because the area in front of the bus stand was completely taken up by motorcycles because of which the bus could not stop at the dock,” said Dario Hidalgo of WRI Ross Centre for Sustainable Cities.With over one crore registered vehicles in Delhi and thousands more entering the city on a daily basis, traffic and parking are the biggest challenges faced by the city. A report prepared by the Centre of Science and Environment (CSE) has stated if all vehicles are brought together, Delhi would need parking space equivalent to nearly 310 football fields. The study also states that nearly 10% of the total urban land in Delhi is under parking, that too for cars that remain stationed at one place nearly 90% of the time and help meet only 14% of Delhi’s travel needs.Rasik Pansare, chief marketing officer at GetMyParking, a start-up that offers innovative parking solutions, cited Hauz Khaz village as a case study of traffic and its relation to parking. “From Friday 5 pm onwards, every week you will find Hauz Khaz Village in a complete mess because of cars parked on all roads leading to the place. There are at least two schools right there, one of which is an MCD school. Both have grounds. On weekends, spaces of schools can easily be used for car parking at such hubs,” he said. Pansare also suggested that the 48 bus depots spread across Delhi could also be used for parking during the time when most buses are out on the roads. OP Mishra, who represented the Delhi government at the conference called for an “urgent need” to make roads “tougher” for cars. “Instead, we need to focus on making our roads livable spaces where pedestrians, cyclists and public transport get priority,” he said.Emphasising on the need for augmenting mass transport in cities, Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog said cities must evolve on the back of public transport systems. “The future of mobility lies in leveraging digital revolution and technologies. Entrepreneurs have a big role to play in finding such solutions,” he said.