(Written by Sanjana Bhalerao)
The work to give Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) junction a makeover on the lines of New York’s Times Square will start from January 15.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and an American organisation have proposed to transform the CSMT junction into a pedestrian-friendly area. The makeover include delineated traffic lanes, walking and resting zones. However, multiple access points and exits are likely to pose a challenge to engineers.
The junction is slated to be redesigned by the National Association of City Transportation Officials-Global Designing Cities Initiative (NACTO-GDCI) under BIGRS (Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety) on the lines of the Times Square.
To study the operational difficulty, the American organisation will make temporary changes using traffic cones, changing traffic lanes, temporary markings among others. After 15 days, changes will be made to the designs if needed. “From January 15, we will conduct trials without any permanent changes at first. If it is successful, then we will make permanent changes. The area has high footfall and it is a critical junction to be redesigned,” said Vinod Chithore, chief engineer, roads and traffic department.
As per the plan, the junction will have direct crossings, plazas, refuge islands, pedestrian zones and traffic lanes.
The similar approach will be implemented across 20 junctions in the city, under the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety. Other roads taken under the initiative include Dr Annie Besant Road, B R Ambedkar Road, Jijabai Bhosle Marg, Jogeshwari Vikhroli Link Road, P D’Mello Road, Santacruz Chembur Link Road, Senapati Bapat Marg, V N Purohi Marg.
The BPIGRS was started in 2015 after an agreement signed between Michael Bloomberg and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. As per the data from BIGRS, since the initiative began, road crash deaths have reduced by 20 per cent from 611 in 2015 to 490 in 2017. The year 2018 recorded a decline of around 17 per cent as compared to last year.