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Since 1st March, 1999
 
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Dispur green light to study for metro rail

Jan. 11: Dispur has given the green signal for a study to introduce metro rail on two corridors to ease the increasingly chaotic traffic condition.

The Guwahati development department and Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority officials gave a presentation in this regard before Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi yesterday.

The first corridor of 32.4km will be from the airport to Narengi via Jalukbari, Bharalumukh, Fancy Bazar, Chandmari, Noonmati connecting the eastern and western parts of Guwahati. The second 11.8km-long corridor will be from Paltan Bazar to Khanapara via Ulubari, Bhangagarh, Ganeshguri, Dispur connecting the central area with the southeastern part.

The presentation focused mainly on the need to develop a proper mobility system to streamline the present chaotic traffic situation for which the main strategy is to start a mass public transit mechanism.

At present, a person can travel 18km in an hour within the city while the use of public transport is 18 per cent. Studies show that if corrective measures are not taken urgently, the person will be able to traverse only 7km per hour in the city and use only 10 per cent public transport.

“In order to prevent this situation, it is proposed to increase the share of trips to 45 per cent by introducing a proper public transit mechanism like metro rail or bus rapid transit system (BRTS) on certain corridors. This will restrict and reduce the share of trips of private cars and two-wheelers which is now almost 70 per cent,” an official present at the meeting said.

The official said the expected passenger per hour per direction (that is, the rush of passengers in a certain direction in an hour, PPHPD) in both the identified corridors would be more than 5,000 PPHPD, a primary requirement for introducing metro rail. The bus transit system will not be able to cater to the increased public transit load and some alternative arrangement by way of metro rail/BRTS has to be planned for future, he added.

Official sources said the decision to approach the Union ministry of urban development for necessary funds to take up the feasibility study and preparation of a detailed project report was also taken at the meeting. Gogoi has also interacted with Union urban development minister Kamal Nah in this regard and the minister assured positive help and assistance for the development of Guwahati.

The meeting was attended by J.B. Singh, principal secretary, GDD, Jishnu Baruah, principal secretary to the chief minister, A.K. Bhutani, vice-chairman, GMDA, Archana Verma, commissioner and secretary to the chief minister, Manish Thakur, secretary, Guwahati Development Authority and M. Angamuthu, chief executive officer, GMDA.