Thursday, May 26, 2011


Everyday I go to my office on a bicycle. The road I take is from Old Madras road near Metro depot towards Bagmane Tech Park from Sudaganta Pallya, touching Mallesh pallya, winding through Vignan nagar and finally leading to old airport road near Helicopter Division. A distance of around 7 kms. While riding a cycle, I get lot of time to observe the road and the life associated with it as I am not preoccupied in finding my place on the road like other four wheeler drivers! Speed of cycle also gives time to ponder about the surroundings. I decided to do a case study of the road which I take everyday and do a feasibility check for scope of improvement so that the road users would have a better experience while driving on the road. This was to be achieved by reducing bottle necks, reduce the filth and increase the effective width of the road.

This particular road has garbage dumped at places where there is road turning or on the sides of the roads where there are vacant spaces. A total of 21 garbage points. There is not a single garbage collecting vat, build or placed apart from two which were found small and inadequate. People throw the garbage at these points. In fact over the years these points have evolved and emerged as the most suitable garbage throwing points and BBMP could use this ready piece of information to place suitable garbage vats at these vantage points, so that the garbage is contained in the vat and not get strewn every where on the road and the surroundings.

The garbage clearing trucks come at the exact time when all others are rushing for their offices. The garbage truck waits on the main road and scavengers manually put the filth in the truck. BBMP could afford the automatic mechanical vats, which could be fork lifted and taken to the garbage disposal grounds preferably in the night. All these services must be pressed into service when people are asleep and roads are empty. This is how it is done elsewhere in foreign countries.

Stray dogs and cattle surround the garbage increasing the inconvenience of the people moving on the road.

The roads are laid but the sides and kerbs are not done up properly. This causes the road shoulders to go unused and dangerous for the car and two wheeler drivers.

In fact the effective width of the road in many cases reduces by half due to parking, undone and unkempt shoulders and the trees protruding on the road. The effective width is reduced by the following irritants:-

• The trees should be either on the footpath if available and well trimmed. In many cases the trees are planted such that the trunk is on the road after the foot path. The expance or droop of the branches meddles with the traffic and in some cases interferes with the telephone and electric wires across the road.

• Buildings under construction. The building plan is such that it occupies every each of the plot or land without any open or free space. When under construction the construction materials are strewen on the main road which makes the road users thereby reducing the effective road width.

• Public and Goods carriers parked overnight which occupy sides of the roads further reducing the effective width of the road.

• Accumulated silt where the road meets the footpath and inadequate storm water outlets add to the misery during the rains.

• The electric poles are not relocated with the widening of roads, hindering the smooth flow of the traffic.

The quality of the tarring of the road is so bad that one has to be constantly on the vigil of the surface of the road rather than who is front of the vehicle, less the vehicle tyre goes deep into the valley like pit or suddenly sees a mountain like huge speed breaker.

It is not that the BBMP authorities don’t now how to go about setting the things right as I could see the last stretch from Aeronautical Development Authority (ADA) towards the old airport road, where the effective width of the road is equal to the width of the road because of the neatly maintained and silt free shoulders. The road is neatly done up where it meets the footpath. The road is marked and the road surface is comparatively of better quality. Still there are no garbage vats here also. An involved local corporater can prod, nag and get the work done from BBMP.

If the following tips are employed by BBMP this road can become a model road. The success of this road can then be repleted for any road in Bangalore and if BBMP selects and does one road per month then in five years time most of the roads in bangalore would become pleasant and presentable.

Tips for BBMP to ensure better and presentable roads:-

• Place vats at the garbage points. Pick the garbage in the night.

• Bring down the stray dog and cattle menace.

• Try to make effective width equal to the actual width of the road as explained in this case study.

• Mark the roads properly. Remember people have inherent respect for anything written, printed or marked. The first reaction is to follow the instructions. People would think twice to jump the marked line.

• Make overnight parking of the public carriers and goods carriers, not in the city but outside the city.

• For GOD’s sake don’t work in compartments. Have coordination between deferent departments.

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