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Thursday, Oct 17, 2019

Himachal plans Rs 2,800-crore cable-car project to ease traffic woes

“Plans are afoot to have one integrated cable-car line for all junctions on the main circular road,” adish Sharma principal secretary, public works department and transport.

india Updated: Sep 13, 2019 22:34 IST
Gaurav Bisht
Gaurav Bisht
Hindustan Times, Shimla
The ropeways will come up at Shimla, Manali and Dharamshala.
The ropeways will come up at Shimla, Manali and Dharamshala.(HT File)
         

Grappling with humongous traffic problems in tourist towns in the hills, Himachal Pradesh government, taking a cue from Bolivia, have drawn up plans to develop a huge ropeway project in Shimla, Manali and Dharamshala.

Ropeways and rapid transport development corporation nodal agency has drawn up a ₹2800 crore project for three main towns. Government of India undertaking WAPCOS had drawn the conceptual plans for the project.

“A detailed project report has already been drawn for Shimla. It will cost close to ₹1200 crore,” said Jadish Sharma principal secretary, public works department and transport. “Plans are afoot to have one integrated cable-car line for all junctions on the main circular road,” he said.

Jagdish Sharma was part of a high level delegation that visited Austria, Bolivia and Switzerland to study cost effective and eco-friendly ropeway transport system in May this year along with principal secretary to chief minister Sanjay Kundu and managing director RRTDC Ajay Sharma. During its visit, the delegation found that the ropeway system was robust and could withstand extreme climatic conditions and high altitudes. “Ropeway is only transport system that can be used during winter months,” he said.

Shimla’s main circular road is 17 km with nearly 61 junctions. The government is planning to modernise them and link them with cable cars. Traffic jams, which are common sight in Shimla, Mandi, Dalhousie, Dharamshala and Manali, worsen on weekends. Nearly 10,000 vehicles enter Shimla and Manali on weekends. Tourist rush hampers traffic movement on the main highway connecting Shimla to Parwanoo and from Jalandhar to Manali.

Apart from jams, road parking has emerged as the biggest hazard for travellers in Shimla. The number of vehicles in the state capital has increased from 32,228 in 2005 to 77,945 in 2018. Nearly 1.65 lakh vehicles are registered in Shimla urban and rural areas. More than 10,000 vehicles were registered in Shimla urban in the last decade. The town faces acute shortage of parking spaces, a problem that successive governments have failed to address.

First Published: Sep 13, 2019 22:34 IST

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