Caught in a mess, but there is a way out

Multi-level park­ing, sell­ing park­ing space for heavy and light ve­hi­cles sep­a­rately and a change in the at­ti­tude of mo­torists will ease con­ges­tion, say ex­perts

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - HTFORNAVIM­UMBAI - G Mo­hi­ud­din Jeddy ■ ht­for­nav­i­mum­[email protected]­dus­tan­times.com

A decade ago, when Navi Mum­bai was still be­ing planned, it was touted to be the city of the fu­ture. Un­for­tu­nately, the plan did not ac­count for the bur­geon­ing pop­u­la­tion and with it, the rise in ve­hi­cles.

The paucity of park­ing fa­cil­i­ties has now prompted ur­ban plan­ners and other of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing the city’s traf­fic po­lice, to re­visit the city’s in­fra­struc­ture and help ease-up the con­ges­tion on ar­te­rial roads.

“The main rea­son for the park­ing prob­lem in the city is the lack of plan­ning by the City and In­dus­trial De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion (Cidco). Un­for­tu­nately, it was planned un­der the as­sump­tion that the city would not grow,” said Vi­jay Patil, deputy com­mis­sioner of po­lice (traf­fic). “How­ever, now that the num­ber of ve­hi­cles is in­creas­ing with ev­ery pass­ing day, it is im­por­tant that the prob­lem be ad­dresses im­me­di­ately.”

Ac­cord­ing to traf­fic ex­perts, bus stands were a ma­jor cause of the traf­fic con­ges­tion on the city roads. An ex­am­ple of this is the Kalam­boli area. One of the big­gest trans­port junc­tions in the state, more than 3,000 trans­porters have their of­fices in the Jawa­har­lal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) area. About 7,000-8,000 con­tain­ers and heavy ve­hi­cles pass through the area and are parked there ev­ery day. This re­sults in ma­jor traf­fic snarls in the area, which then spills on to other roads dur­ing peak hours.

“One plau­si­ble so­lu­tion for the prob­lem caused by heavy ve­hi­cles is to en­sure that be­fore the ve­hi­cle is pur­chased, a per­ma­nent park­ing space is pur­chased. Trans­porters of­ten pur­chase 100 trucks, but don’t have space to park their ve­hi­cles,” said Patil.

Patil said Cidco was also look­ing into the is­sue of the lack of park­ing fa­cil­i­ties for heavy ve­hi­cles. “The agency is work­ing on a project to pro­vide park­ing for 20,000 trucks in JNPT. It should be ready in 2-3 years.”

Fur­ther, he sug­gested that the re­gional trans­port of­fices in the city make it com­pul­sory for pur­chas­ing park­ing space for light ve­hi­cles as well. “With this, multi-level park­ing is also needed to re­duce the park­ing mess in the city,” said Patil.

On the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the traf­fic po­lice, Patil said per­son­nel had been in­structed to take ac­tion against mo­torists who are found to prac­tice dou­ble park­ing, es­pe­cially in busy mar­ket ar­eas.

Many ur­ban plan­ners have

THE PARK­ING PROB­LEM IS THE RE­SULT OF LACK OF PLAN­NING BY CIDCO. UN­FOR­TU­NATELY, IT WAS AS­SUMED THE CITY WOULD NOT GROW.

VI­JAY PATIL, deputy com­mis­sioner of po­lice (traf­fic)

also sug­gested that new hous­ing so­ci­eties en­sure that ad­e­quate space is al­lot­ted for park­ing for res­i­dents and out­siders. “The Cidco build­ings that are be­ing re- de­vel­oped should also have park­ing space,” Patil sug­gested.

Tak­ing heed of the sit­u­a­tion, the Navi Mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion (NMMC) has also planned a multi- level park­ing fa­cil­ity in sec­tor 15, Vashi. The park­ing fa­cil­ity near the St Law­er­ence School nul­lah will also be opened for pub­lic, soon, civic of­fi­cials said. “Be­sides, it is es­sen­tial that res­i­dents be dis­ci­pline and main­tain traf­fic rules.”

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