29 ജനുവരി 2012

Bangalore's "world class" roads !

Not really a piece of modern art, but the junction I daily crosses to reach my office. A few months back there was a public outcry on the quality of Bangalore roads and the administration (State government, BBMP,BDA,NHAI etc)  folks were quick to point out that the road infrastructure they built for Bangalore is nothing less than “World class”. While I am not sure of administration's definition of “world class”, the picture below is a simple example of how the roads are designed in Bangalore. The arrows indicate innumerable possible routes one can take while crossing the junction and I might have missed a few I am sure. You can find at least 5-6 junctions like while traveling from Silk board junction towards electronic city on Hosur road. Service roads on either side allowing traffic both directions and 6 line highway in the middle. (There is another 4 line above the head which i am not considering now). With service road allowing traffic in both directions, traffic management in all junctions are a mess and I don’t see any thought applied on designing the road or how the traffic should be managed etc, instead the commuters are left to their patience to negotiate the junctions in whatever way they want to do it. 



Thinking of getting rid of the vehicle and try walking! Better to get little bit of training first, as the pedestrians are left to their acrobatic skills to cross the road. To cross the road pedestrians need to either walk 1-2KM or just jump over the fences on either side of the main lines and run across the road with speeding vehicles approaching. Pedestrian underpasses are there in one or two major junctions. While the pedestrians are denied with even the basic infrastructure such as decent foot paths, sky walks to cross roads (at least at busy roads) in the city; administration is spending money in developing gardens around the traffic junctions. Gardens are fine (after all Bangalore was a garden city once), but why not give priority to the basic infrastructure first. 

Talking about world class roads, I travel around 5 KM to reach to Hosur road on my way to office in electronic city, and just 30 speed breakers, that’s all I have to deal with. Haralur road is even better with 45 speed breakers for 6.5KM. Forget about common man’s daily commute (which is what our democratically elected administration does every day, "forget common man"), just think about the plight of ambulances and fire force vehicles trying deliver the services at the earliest.