July 3, 2021 9:47:36 pm
Allowing electric golf carts, similar to those around the Taj Mahal, to ply in the area is being discussed as phase 1 of the Chandni Chowk redevelopment project comes to a close and planning begins for phase 2.
It is learnt that authorities feel there’s a need for public transport in the area to discourage private vehicles. To this end, the commissioner (transport department) has been tasked with finalising the modalities of procurement and operations of the vintage-looking golf carts.
The scramble crossing in front of Red Fort is set to be completed by July 15, and the remaining toilets, fire tanks, and police booths will be ready by July-end.
Officials said some cobble stone and granite work on the road and footpath is still pending. The scramble crossing, once finished, will allow pedestrians to cross in all directions, including diagonally. The purpose is to ease pedestrian movement and ensure that the theme of the area in front of Red Fort is in tune with that of a redeveloped Chandni Chowk, officials said.
Work on the redevelopment project had been stalled due to labour shortage during the lockdown, but picked up pace soon after.
In a meeting chaired by Urban Development Minister Satyendar Jain on June 25, it was decided that 14-20 boom barriers will be set up to regulate traffic. CCTV cameras will also be installed where the boom barriers are, to keep track of violators.
Apart from the golf carts, 107 refurbished cycle rickshaws will be allowed to ply in the area; this number will increase gradually. A parking management plan will also be presented by July 15.
It was decided in the meeting that the PWD engineer-in-chief will review the status of arterial roads by mid-July. Consultants for redevelopment of Netaji Subhash Marg, Jama Masjid precinct, SPM Marg and Chandni Chowk facade restoration will be appointed soon. “We have received bids for consultation and are in the process of finalising one. We are targeting to finalise a consultant in two-three weeks,” an official said.
Phase 2 of the redevelopment work comprises facade restoration and arterial road redevelopment. The plan is to make facades of all buildings on the stretch look uniform.
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