Two years on, Pune’s parking policy awaits implementation
Civic activists have appealed to the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to execute the parking policy it passed in March 2018 which creates parking spots on major roads around the city. The parking spaces will be chargeable by the civic body and also generate revenue.
Parisar, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) focusing or traffic issues, has asked the PMC to immediately introduce the recently passed policy. The new parking policy, which allows enforcement of pay and park on certain roads is gathering dust due to the opposition from some corporators.
Sujit Patwardhan, program director of Parisar, along with his colleague Ranjit Gadgil and air quality co-ordinator Sharmila Deo have accused the civic body of delaying the implementation of policy unnecessarily.
“The PMC had approved the parking policy on March 23, 2018. Despite getting the nod from elected members, it is still gathering dust. After getting a nod from the general body meeting, it was decided that the mayor would call the meeting with party leaders and announce the parking policy on selected roads on a pilot basis. Later, it would get executed in the city,” said Patwardhan.
In the past when activists approached Pune mayor Murlidhar Mohol, he promised that the civic body would take a decision on it very soon but nothing happened, according to Patwardhan.
Gadgil said, “Cities around the world are talking of parking management. As cars are occupying valuable land space which can be used for housing hospitals, parks and community spaces. As traffic congestion grows in urban areas, it is imperative to have a good management system in place which will create convenience not just for the car users, but all users who occupy road space, like cyclists, bus commuters and pedestrians.”
The parking policy calls for marking streets and spaces to be used as parking lots which will be charged by the civic body. Although the administration has already given a list of around 37 roads including FC road, JM road, Gokhale road, Dhole Patil road, Koregaon Park road, MG road, among others it has not been implemented as the final decision was to be taken at an all-party committee meeting chaired by the mayor.
Deo said, “There is a strong connection between having a parking policy and mitigating congestion and air pollution. When free parking is available it promotes haphazard parking that creates traffic blocks and congestion. PMC must need to execute its parking policy.”
As per the new parking policy, residents will need to pay the parking fee for two-wheelers, as well as night charges. The minimum parking fee for two-wheelers is Rs 2 per hour and maximum Rs 4 per hour. The minimum parking fee for four-wheelers is Rs10 per hour and a maximum of Rs 20 per hour. This met with resistance from politicians since the 2019 Lok sabha and state elections were scheduled for this year.