Bus lanes at Mumbai’s BKC are cutting down travel time, why don’t we have more of them?
At the busy business district of BKC, a dedicated bus lane has helped cut travel time by nearly half — from 37 minutes to cover a 3.6-km stretch to just 15, even during the peak hours.Updated: Aug 02, 2017, 09:24 IST
At the busy business district of BKC, a dedicated bus lane has helped cut travel time by nearly half — from 37 minutes to cover a 3.6-km stretch to just 15, even during the peak hours.
The dedicated bus lanes handle 175 buses an hour (60 BEST buses and the others, contract buses ferrying company staffers), even with bikes and autos encroaching into the lanes. That’s 8,550 commuters an hour. The bus lane began as an experiment, and it was successful despite the half-hearted approach by the authorities implementing the project.
Despite its success, the plan has not been replicated anywhere else in the city. “The BKC experiment shows how dedicated lanes use little space but carry several people,” said transport expert Ashok Datar. Another expert said a recent experiment that gave buses right of way between Mahalaxmi station and Haji Ali also worked. In this case, traffic cops allowed only buses on the bridge, diverting other vehicles under it.
Experts said both models proved dedicated lanes helped buses go faster, saved fuel and time. Yet, bus lane projects proposed at Haji Ali-Worli Naka, Mahalaxmi station-Worli Naka, Suman Nagar -Sion, Kalina junction-Amar Mahal junction, Santacruz Chembur Link Road and Jogeshwari Vikhroli Link Road are all yet to be implemented.The reason, according to sources, is political leaders and bureaucrats are not convinced a land-starved city like Mumbai could also manage bus lanes.
“Where is the space for a corridor for just buses ? You saw what happened in Delhi,” said a bureaucrat.