Separate lane for VIPs to worsen gridlock: DTCA

Staff Correspondent | Published: 01:07, Feb 15,2018 | Updated: 01:25, Feb 15,2018

 
 

Vehicles get stuck into severe traffic congestion on Topkhana Road in Dhaka on Wednesday as BNP leaders and activists gathered and held a token hunger strike blocking a section of the road. — Sourav Lasker

Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority has recently given opinion against a Cabinet Division proposal for separate lane for very important persons on roads in Dhaka Metropolitan City areas.
It opined that separate lanes for VIPs would worsen traffic gridlock situation in the capital and rather recommended separate lanes for movement of public buses and emergency service vehicles.
On December 31, 2017, the cabinet division sent a letter to the Road Transport and Highways Division asking for necessary steps for building separate lanes on DMC roads for VIP movement and vehicles used in emergency services including law enforcement agencies, ambulances and fire service as movement of these vehicles are badly hindered by congestion.
The RTHD sent the proposal to the DTCA on January 10 for feasibility study and sought their opinions.
DTCA executive director Syed Ahmed has told New Age on Wednesday that they had sent their opinions to the road division by rejecting the proposal for separate VIP lanes on February 6.
‘In the current situation, if we create separate lanes for VIP’s vehicles, it will aggravate the city’s traffic congestion,’ he said.
He said they had sent a total of eight recommendations including separate lanes for public buses and emergency services, limited movement of non-motorised vehicles on main roads, discouraging usage of private cars by increasing parking fees and taxes to ease traffic congestion and easier VIP movement.
The letter, which was sent to the RTHD, also says the Revised Strategic Transport Plan recommends to construct five Mass Rapid Transits, two Bus Rapid Transits, three ring roads, eight radial roads, six expressways, reconstruction of bus network and traffic management in DMC and DTCA areas but no separate lanes.
At present mega projects like MRT line–6, BRT line–3, Dhaka Elevated Expressway are under implementations.
Earlier on February 8, road transport and bridges minister Obaidul Quader told reporters at his secretariat office that he personally did not support the idea of keeping separate lane for VIPs, adding that he was against the ‘VIP culture’.
The proposal for separate lane for VIPs and emergency services has drawn criticism from experts and rights activists as they said it would cause total chaos to Dhaka’s traffic already reeling from severe congestion.

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