Bengaluru: Mobility derailed, activists pin hopes on 2021 | Bengaluru News – Times of India


BENGALURU: While work-from-home and restrictions helped reduce traffic on perennially choked roads in Bengaluru in 2020, the pandemic proved a doubleedged sword of sorts.
Ridership in public transport fell as many commuters switched to private vehicles over fears of the virus. However, many crucial projects were delayed, although state government agencies blamed it on the nationwide lockdown and exodus of migrant workers.

Experts say fast-tracking such projects are the need of the hour since more vehicles will be on roads once offices and educational institutions reopen after vaccines are rolled out.
Two Metro lines — the 6.4km Yelachenahalli-Silk Institute section on Kanakapura Road and the Mysuru Road-Kengeri stretch, which were expected to be ready by August and October 2020 respectively, are yet to begin commercial operations. While the commissioner of metro rail safety (CMRS) has given the nod for Kanakapura Road Metro, it is yet to be inaugurated. Kengeri Metro is expected to be ready only by April.
However, the central government is yet to approve the Outer Ring Road (Silk Board-KR Puram- Kempegowda International Airport) Metro corridor. Work is expected to begin this year once BMRCL gets the Centre’s nod.
The long-pending demand for a common mobility card, which can be used on Metro and BMTC buses alike, is likely to be fulfilled by June, but there is no clarity on the formation of the much-delayed Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority (UMTA) to coordinate multiple government agencies.

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Sagar Biswas

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