Don’t allow flyovers near CoEP,Activists urge CM

Opposing the Pune Municipal Corporation’s plan to construct flyovers in the vicinity of the College of Engineering,Pune,civic activists have petitioned Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and urged him to “stop a tragedy from taking place”.

Written by Express News Service | Published: April 5, 2012 2:51 am

Opposing the Pune Municipal Corporation’s plan to construct flyovers in the vicinity of the College of Engineering,Pune,(CoEP),civic activists have petitioned Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and urged him to “stop a tragedy from taking place”.

In a letter to the chief minister,civic activists,including Prashant Inamdar,Satish Khot,Sujit Patwardhan,Jugal Rathi and Dilip Sarda,said the civic body has proposed a project comprising three flyovers,of which two are in the vicinity of CoEP “These two flyovers cross each other resulting in a massive 2-tier structure,” the letter said.

The activists said the idea behind the flyover project is to make the road junction at CoEP and nearby Sangamwadi road junction signal-free.

“Basically,flyover is not a sustainable solution and can,at best,provide only temporary relief. The problem will again become serious within a few years. Flyovers only shift the problem from one location to another. Moreover,they benefit only private vehicles (for a short period) and create major problems for pedestrians,cyclists and bus commuters,affecting their mobility and safety. In Pune,too,several flyovers built earlier have failed to solve the traffic problem and at times even aggravated it. This has also been proved world over. The flyover is no more considered a good traffic solution.”

Inamdar said flyovers are now being demolished in many cities around the world. Signal-free junctions generate additional problems for pedestrians as continuous flow of traffic makes it difficult for them to cross the road safely.

“Thus flyovers and signal-free junctions are not in the best interest of the citizens,” the activists stressed in the letter.

Calling for chief minister’s urgent intervention,the activists said,“CoEP is a highly reputed engineering institute established in 1854 and is more than 150 years old. Bharat Ratna Sir M Visvesvarayya was an alumnus of the institute. The main building of the CoEP is a Grade I heritage structure which has recently been renovated. Presently,there are about 5,000 students studying in CoEP. There are also ambitious development plans for making the institute one of the topmost in the world. All this requires not only land and proper infrastructure but also suitable ambience.

The letter said in the present case,the real need is to reduce the traffic on the highway passing through CoEP.

“A holistic traffic solution should be worked out whereby the two severed parts of the campus can be reunified in the best possible way and interests of pedestrians,cyclists and bus commuters are safeguarded. This will automatically take care of the safety of students as well. The proposed scheme of flyovers on the highway would do exactly the opposite.”

Major impact

On citizens

n Walking along the road and crossing it will become life threatening

n Cyclists will find it impossible to ride safely

Bus commuters will face considerable inconvenience due to removal/relocation of bus stops and highly unsafe conditions for walking

Increased vehicle speeds will make roads highly unsafe

Any traffic scheme with above impacts is against the National Urban Transport Policy,say activists.

On CoEP

CoEP will again lose a large plot of land,hitting expansion plan

Increased noise pollution will

affect academic functioning

Proper and safe access to

buildings as well as transit spaces will be affected

The massive flyovers will mar its imposing facade

A number of trees will be cut

Safety of students will be compromised

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