Driving into Old Delhi Railway Station is no longer about trying to inch ahead of the next vehicle and in the process blocking the traffic behind you,which was already moving in a haphazard manner.
As of April 1,the Northern Railway opened three dedicated lanes and drop-off bays for autos,taxis and private vehicles inside the station premises.
The streamlining of traffic inside the station premises has in turn helped decongest the vehicle mess on SP Mukherjee Marg.
The access point,in front of the main station building,has been closed for vehicular movement. Now,a turnstile located here to facilitate entry for pedestrians.
Divisional Railway Manager,Northern Railway,Ashwani Lohani told Newsline,The circulating area revamp was our top priority as the stations accessibility needed immediate attention. There was utter chaos outside the station and there were several traffic bottlenecks at the entry points. We have successfully offloaded a major part of the traffic from the SP Mukherjee Marg and made access to the station much easier.
The previous circulation plan had a number of entry points,leading to confusion among passengers,officials said. Most passengers had no idea about the location for parking lots. This has now been sorted out by unifying the circulating area and providing proper access. Signage for parking and entry has been provided. The new circulating area also gives passengers the option of getting down at any of the three entrance gates in the terminal building,depending on the location of the platforms. This will also offload the East booking office entry, said Rakesh Chaudhary,Senior Divisional Engineer,Northern Railway.
Officials said the length of the terminal building is adequate for the movement of vehicles,but the width is constrained. The new arrangement of long lanes,by way of unifying circulating area,is expected to improve the capacity for handling autos,taxis and cycle-rickshaws. Due to width constraint at the station,buses have not been allowed inside the terminal.
For pedestrians,four access points have been provided.
Railway officials,however,are still in the process of streamlining the access points.
After the U-turn at Fatehpuri,passengers have to travel a long distance on the already crowded SP Mukherjee Marg. This could be avoided if the entry to the station is made as close as possible to the Fatehpuri traffic signal. This will help passengers get direct access into the stations circulating area,and also offload the railway-related traffic from SP Mukherjee Marg, Chaudhary said.
Officials said buses tend to park in front of the station entry,thereby,choking the road. These issues are expected to be sorted out in near future. Part of the SP Mukherjee Marg load has already been diverted to Hamilton Road by remodeling the second entry to the station from Zorawar Singh Marg, Lohani said.