Parking mess: Four lots unauctioned,reforms a non-starter

The Municipal Corporation’s inability to auction four paid parking lots,over the past six months,and its attempts at reform going awry has only increased the chaos at the parking lots

Written by Khushboo Sandhu | Chandigarh | Published: July 2, 2012 1:27 am

The Municipal Corporation’s (MC) inability to auction four paid parking lots,over the past six months,and its attempts at reform going awry has only increased the chaos at the parking lots. While on one hand this is causing losses to the civic body,on the other the MC has been unable to streamline the parking spaces.

The civic body has been making futile attempts at auctioning four paid parking lots since January this year. During the January auction,the parking lots received lower bids than what were received in a previous auction forcing observers to recommend that they be cancelled. The auction that followed in February met a similar fate.

Another attempt at auctioning the parking lots was made recently. No bids were,however,received. Amidst talks of a cartel of contractors operating in the city,the civic body is yet to find takers for the parking lots.

With the four parking lots being unmanned,apart from causing losses in lakhs to the MC,it is creating problems for residents as well. The vehicles in these parking areas,present mostly in Sector 17,are parked haphazardly.

An official said that despite the auctions having not received a good response,tenders would be invited again in the coming days. The contractors,meanwhile,opine that there is a need to increase the parking fee,which has not changed since the paid parking system was started in 2002. Attempts to do this have been thwarted by councillors,who state that instead of a hike,advertisements should be allowed in the parking lots.

The attempts at reforms in the parking lots by the MC has also not yielded much result. The recently introduced token system at Sector 17 has also failed with the contractors not issuing tokens any more. The aim of the token system was to ensure that each parking lot handles only the right amount of cars.

With the focus of the Municipal Corporation being in streamlining the parking situation in Sector 17,the paid parking lots in the other sectors are in a mess. Excessive vehicles in parking lots causing jams and restricting movement are a common sight. The norms that have been laid for the parking lots are not being followed.

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