With city roads creaking under the strain of burgeoning vehicles leading to high pollution levels, UT Advisor Manoj Parida ordered a study of road capacity in Chandigarh to know the level of vehicle population the city can stand. The aim is to plan a proper urban public transport.
The advisor told Newsline that vehicles were the primary reason of pollution in the city. “If we know the road capacity, we can go for ring road to divert cars. That can even help to restrict the numbers of car registrations; build parking facility, allow stilt parking and other issues,” said Parida.
He added, “ We are studying carrying capacity of Chandigarh to plan an urban public transport.”
Chandigarh has over two vehicles per household, making it the city with highest density of vehicles. The percentage increase in the total number of vehicles in Chandigarh for over a decade (2007-2018) has been over 24.5 per cent. In August 2018, a report by the Centre for Science and Research had concluded that Chandigarh was the second worst among 14 cities in “per travel trip emissions” due to high usage of personal vehicles. The share of car usage was close to 80 per cent in the city as compared to Lucknow (70 per cent), Ahmedabad (65 per cent) and Jaipur (60 per cent).
As per a study of the daily (24 hour) traffic at the outer cordon points, about 1,52,650 vehicles enter or leave Chandigarh in a day. There is also a high volume of passenger and freight traffic. Madhya Marg is the worst affected road since it provides the shortest and most direct connection between the towns of Mullanpur, Kharar, Anandpur Sahib and Baddi in Himachal on the west and the towns of Manimajra, Panchkula, Pinjore, Kalka, Chandimandir Cantonment in the east.
Owing to increasing pollution, UT Administrator VP Singh Badnore had directed the transport department to regulate all polluting vehicles entering from Panchkula and Mohali. UT is also mulling to introduce Chandigarh pollution free stickers on those vehicles which adhere to required pollution levels, to ensure that only vehicle with the sticker ply in the city.
On a vehicular high
The vehicle registration in the city has increased from 45,278 vehicles in 2018, which included 28,132 two-wheelers and 16,999 four-wheelers with the RLA. It means, Chandigarh witnessed an addition of 124 vehicles per day last year.