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DoMoreRoadsSolveTrafficCongestion??

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  • Sujit Patwardhan
    4 April 2000 Hi All, I m Sujit Patwardhan from Pune, India, representing an environmental NGO called Parisar. Pune is a city with a population of around 2
    Message 1 of 6 , Apr 4 7:09 AM
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      4 April 2000

      Hi All,
      I'm Sujit Patwardhan from Pune, India, representing an environmental NGO
      called Parisar. Pune is a city with a population of around 2 million. The
      city has a rich history and culture and has changed during the thirty years
      from a being an educational city to an industrial city. Luckily the
      industrial development has taken place only on the periphery so the city
      proper (with its core area of heavily congested old city ) is mainly
      residential and commercial shopping etc. Two rivers pass through the city
      (one meandering right through the congested parts) join at a point
      northeast of the city and continue eastward downstream out of the city limits.
      The Municipal Corporation has no master plan for traffic and continues to
      follow outdated methods to tackle the traffic problem:-- of making more and
      more roads (wherever there is scope to do so), widening existing roads by
      chopping off roadside trees (using the argument "people's lives are more
      important than trees"), and demolishing old buildings when roads are in the
      old parts of the city, building fly-overs (which are very capital expensive).
      The public transport constists of around 800 to 900 buses. Most of these
      are old, heavily polluting and not run very effciently, as a result of
      which the population of private vehicles (75% of which are two wheelers)
      has soared from 200,000 two wheelers in 1991 to 425.000 two wheelers in
      1999. More than 90,000 new vehicles are added to the vehicle population
      each year. This total vehicle population of over 425,000 vehicles
      translates into a density of around 12,000 vehicles per 100,000 population,
      even surpassing Bombay (the most prosperous city in the country)
      which has "only" 4,000 vehicles per 100,000 population.
      Air pollution levels in the city are already 1.5 times higher that the
      level considered "safe" by the Central Pollution Control Board". This is
      bound to get worse if so many new vehicles are added to the road each year
      (even though lead free petrol has now replaced leaded petrol).
      The city administrators are ignorant of the more innovative methods of
      controling traffic, such as :- introducing disincentives on private
      vehicles, making parking costly, increasing the wheel tax, banning
      motorised vehicles in certain areas..at certain times etc encouraging and
      improving the public transport system, encouraging non polluting modes of
      transport like the bicycle (traditionally Pune was a city of cyclists but
      no one rides cycles anymore,. except the poor who have no choice).
      Most ordinary citizens, frustrated by traffic jams and congestions also
      believe that the only way to beat congestion is to make many many new
      roads, Only after we explain the futility of this method and show them
      statistics of how little the congestion will reduce even if additional
      roads are constructed, do they see the issue clearly, but this is a very
      slow process and the majority of citizens still believe that more roads
      will solve traffic congestion.



      --
      Sujit Patwardhan
      sujit@...
      --------------------------------------
      PARISAR,
      Yamuna, ICS Colony, Ganeshkhind Road, Pune 411 007
      Tel: 5537955

      *****************************************************************
      "In nature there are neither Rewards nor Punishments---
      there are Consequences."
      *****************************************************************
    • Ronald Dawson
      Thank you Sujit, I had to check out my Atlas to see where Pune is and your not to far from Bombay or Sholapur. It s interesting to know that in India, you are
      Message 2 of 6 , Apr 5 12:33 AM
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        Thank you Sujit, I had to check out my Atlas to see where Pune is and your
        not to far from Bombay or Sholapur. It's interesting to know that in India,
        you are having the same problems as we are in the west. The trick is how to
        resolve them. Your on the right path that more roads, more often than not
        exasperate a situation, by inducing traffic. In other words expanding to
        fill the void.
        We value your input & thanks for joining, Dawson

        -----Original Message-----
        From: Sujit Patwardhan [mailto:sujit@...]
        Sent: Tuesday, April 04, 2000 10:10 AM
        To: carfree_cities@...
        Subject: [carfree_cities] DoMoreRoadsSolveTrafficCongestion??


        4 April 2000

        Hi All,
        I'm Sujit Patwardhan from Pune, India, representing an environmental NGO
        called Parisar. Pune is a city with a population of around 2 million. The
        city has a rich history and culture and has changed during the thirty years
        from a being an educational city to an industrial city. Luckily the
        industrial development has taken place only on the periphery so the city
        proper (with its core area of heavily congested old city ) is mainly
        residential and commercial shopping etc. Two rivers pass through the city
        (one meandering right through the congested parts) join at a point
        northeast of the city and continue eastward downstream out of the city
        limits.
        The Municipal Corporation has no master plan for traffic and continues to
        follow outdated methods to tackle the traffic problem:-- of making more and
        more roads (wherever there is scope to do so), widening existing roads by
        chopping off roadside trees (using the argument "people's lives are more
        important than trees"), and demolishing old buildings when roads are in the
        old parts of the city, building fly-overs (which are very capital
        expensive).
        The public transport constists of around 800 to 900 buses. Most of these
        are old, heavily polluting and not run very effciently, as a result of
        which the population of private vehicles (75% of which are two wheelers)
        has soared from 200,000 two wheelers in 1991 to 425.000 two wheelers in
        1999. More than 90,000 new vehicles are added to the vehicle population
        each year. This total vehicle population of over 425,000 vehicles
        translates into a density of around 12,000 vehicles per 100,000 population,
        even surpassing Bombay (the most prosperous city in the country)
        which has "only" 4,000 vehicles per 100,000 population.
        Air pollution levels in the city are already 1.5 times higher that the
        level considered "safe" by the Central Pollution Control Board". This is
        bound to get worse if so many new vehicles are added to the road each year
        (even though lead free petrol has now replaced leaded petrol).
        The city administrators are ignorant of the more innovative methods of
        controling traffic, such as :- introducing disincentives on private
        vehicles, making parking costly, increasing the wheel tax, banning
        motorised vehicles in certain areas..at certain times etc encouraging and
        improving the public transport system, encouraging non polluting modes of
        transport like the bicycle (traditionally Pune was a city of cyclists but
        no one rides cycles anymore,. except the poor who have no choice).
        Most ordinary citizens, frustrated by traffic jams and congestions also
        believe that the only way to beat congestion is to make many many new
        roads, Only after we explain the futility of this method and show them
        statistics of how little the congestion will reduce even if additional
        roads are constructed, do they see the issue clearly, but this is a very
        slow process and the majority of citizens still believe that more roads
        will solve traffic congestion.



        --
        Sujit Patwardhan
        sujit@...
        --------------------------------------
        PARISAR,
        Yamuna, ICS Colony, Ganeshkhind Road, Pune 411 007
        Tel: 5537955

        *****************************************************************
        "In nature there are neither Rewards nor Punishments---
        there are Consequences."
        *****************************************************************


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      • looney_goons@hotmail.com
        Unfortunately, you re right. More roads = more traffic, and ultimately more congestion. In fact, there is a direct correlation between the volume of traffic
        Message 3 of 6 , Apr 14 6:55 AM
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          Unfortunately, you're right. More roads = more traffic, and
          ultimately more congestion. In fact, there is a direct correlation
          between the volume of traffic and the amount of paved roads.

          The obvious answer is to prvide mass-transit systems such as subways
          or surface railways. These are, however, relatively expensive
          options, which is why roads tend to be built instead.

          You say that you have two rivers flowing through the city, one
          through the most congested parts of town. Rivers are not ideal for
          carrying passengers due to the slow speed of boats, but freight is a
          different matter. You might try taking freight off the roads and onto
          the water where possible, the spare road capacity could then be set
          aside for public transport.

          Integrated river / rail terminals could also provide a link into the
          national rail system, enabling commerce to operate more easily.

          If you do settle on a subway system, then cut and fill would be the
          cheapest option for you to implement. Basically, this involves
          digging a large trench, lining the floor and sides with reinforced
          concrete, laying the rails and putting the lid on. Earth is then used
          to fill the hole so that it's flush with the street.

          India does have a good deal of rail expertise, so I'm sure you'll get
          the problem licked sooner or later - just bear in mind the lessons of
          the traffic jammed cities of the US and Europe.
        • Ronald Dawson
          ... One question I have is, why is it that in Paris they building these things called Metroroutes, basically auto only tunnels? ... Like wise, but politics
          Message 4 of 6 , Apr 15 12:17 AM
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            Looney Goons wrote:
            >Unfortunately, you're right. More roads = more traffic, and
            >ultimately more congestion. In fact, there is a direct correlation
            >between the volume of traffic and the amount of paved roads.

            One question I have is, why is it that in Paris they building these things
            called Metroroutes, basically auto only tunnels?

            >The obvious answer is to provide mass-transit systems such as subways
            >or surface railways. These are, however, relatively expensive
            >options, which is why roads tend to be built instead.

            Like wise, but politics often get in the way.

            >You say that you have two rivers flowing through the city, one
            >through the most congested parts of town. Rivers are not ideal for
            >carrying passengers due to the slow speed of boats, but freight is a
            >different matter. You might try taking freight off the roads and onto
            >the water where possible, the spare road capacity could then be set
            >aside for public transport.

            A problem with those of us in more temperate climates is that rivers freeze.

            >Integrated river / rail terminals could also provide a link into the
            >national rail system, enabling commerce to operate more easily.

            Ferrying stuff could be a good start.

            >If you do settle on a subway system, then cut and fill would be the
            >cheapest option for you to implement. Basically, this involves
            >digging a large trench, lining the floor and sides with reinforced
            >concrete, laying the rails and putting the lid on. Earth is then used
            >to fill the hole so that it's flush with the street.

            The cut and cover technique has been around for a while, but one problem
            with it is that if there are utilities under the street it can be difficult
            to reroute them.

            >India does have a good deal of rail expertise, so I'm sure you'll get
            >the problem licked sooner or later - just bear in mind the lessons of
            >the traffic jammed cities of the US and Europe.

            More often or not it's a lack of political will and not a technical thing.

            Ron Dawson
          • J.H. Crawford
            ... I was in Boston this week. Wednesday s headline in the Boston Globe was about cost overruns on the BigDig, a gigantic highway project in downtown Boston.
            Message 5 of 6 , Apr 15 9:31 AM
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              looney_goons@... said:

              >The obvious answer is to prvide mass-transit systems such as subways
              >or surface railways. These are, however, relatively expensive
              >options, which is why roads tend to be built instead.

              I was in Boston this week. Wednesday's headline in the Boston Globe
              was about cost overruns on the "BigDig," a gigantic highway project
              in downtown Boston. Costs had just surged from US$10.8 to 13.5 billion.
              Yess, BILLION. This kind of price tag makes subways look positively cheap.

              Regards,




              ###

              J.H. Crawford _Carfree Cities_
              postmaster@... http://www.carfree.com
            • Ronald Dawson
              ... It still gets me that in Boston they re not building the rail link between North and South stations at the same time. Recently the Big Dig/I-93 project has
              Message 6 of 6 , Apr 16 1:59 AM
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                Mr.Crawford wrote:
                >I was in Boston this week. Wednesday's headline in the Boston Globe
                >was about cost overruns on the "BigDig," a gigantic highway project
                >in downtown Boston. Costs had just surged from US$10.8 to 13.5 billion.
                >Yess, BILLION. This kind of price tag makes subways look positively cheap.

                It still gets me that in Boston they're not building the rail link between
                North and South stations at the same time. Recently the Big Dig/I-93 project
                has been audited by the US government. The Feds were startled by its
                managers earlier when they showed a combined cost overrun of $2.8 billion.
                Now the total is a whopping $13.6 billion. I just hope that the $13.6
                billion for this project is coming from the US highway trust fund and not
                general taxes!
                All I can say is expect the price of this 7.5 mile long road to go up.

                >Regards, Ron Dawson
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