Can we have Metro to Whitefield upon the existing railway track?

On this very Independence Day, we, the people of Bengaluru, are still dependent on quasi-governance structures that we have inherited from the British. Let me not get philosophical, but existing legislative structures ensure that without these layers of beurocracy, we cannot bring even a small change. Is it that we have become more accepting and adjusting?

Part of the problem is we – the citizens, I realise. Many of our fellow Bangaloreans stand at places other than the earmarked bus stands. Also, the corporates do not realise that they are losing quality time of their employee. The corporates do not realise the value of employee attention and activeness during early hours of the day. There is certainly a degree of impact on the creativeness of the employees, if they end up frustrated and late to the office after 10. Also, the same employees leave early from the office in the evenings to beat the traffic.

A wise man once told me that in India politicians have a knack of creating a problem and come up with a taxing solution for the same, and end up making lot of money. We currently do not have real-time statistics of how our tax money is being used for improving the infrastructure. I aim to focus my energy in improvising our existing condition.

Alternative approaches on commuting to Whitefield

1. Can we have a Metro train along the existing Byappanhalli-K R Puram to Hoodi Logistics Area Railway Station? The track is already in place. Why is that we need to lay another elevated Metro track? We can add another track along the existing railway line very easily.

All people commuting to whitefield can take this special train from Byappanhalli to ITPL. We need to lay a simple skywalk platform from Hoodi Logistic area to ITPL.

2. We have more traffic lights installed along the ORR corridor now. For example, at J P Morgan junction, we have a new traffic light for pedestrian crossing. Isn’t it simple to install a skywalk for pedestrians to cross the ORR? Similarly infront of EMC, Bagmane Tech Park, we could have simple skywalks for pedestrian-crossing.

3. Can we bring about awareness within fellow Bangaloreans, not to stand at junctions for quick bus ride, instead go and stand in the designated stops?

4. Can corporates incentivise employees for using company transport and not using their own cars to commute to office? What perks can corporates offer to their employees to accept this change?

5. There is another huge problem which is not foreseen: In an year’s time, the authorities have added additional traffic of 1000 cars to K R Puram Junction. Salarpuria Magnificia Apartments and Commercial Spaces will have 1000 more cars in and out in a day. So be ready to face another hour’s delay in the next one year. Please thank the BDA/BBMP authorities who have approved the project.

7. WFH (Work from Home) – Each company (of whitefield) should promote WFH for a day for its employees in turns, to facilitate decongestion and authorities to work on improvising our infrastructure.

8. Can we have a day where we just ‘DO NOT TURN OUR ENGINES ON?’ The Automobile industry will be up in arms against me. But imagine the gains, if we focus our energies in building alternative fuel energies or electric vehicle. Ofcourse there will be some pain. We are already under pain, what more worse could happen to us? Let’s take a chance, focus on what is important for us and our generations to come!

9. We can create crowd-funded alternative energy ecosystem, by using solar power and netmetering solutions from our own houses. That is the real independence we can visualize. What I realised is we are good at setting other’s house in order, but not our own house. If we cross the pacific, we start being good citizens and start asking more meaningful questions, but here we are used to the chaos.

We need frameworks in place that sense the pulse of the city using real-time sensing platforms, so that our decision makers can make informed decisions. I have putforth a simple form. If you are equally concerned like me, please do share your thoughts!

 

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About Awase Khirni Syed 0 Articles
Awase Khirni Syed is a Bangalore-based GIS expert, with a PhD from University of Zurich.

5 Comments

  1. I was until recently studying abroad in Netherlands. They had an amazing transport network and policy that made commuting within the city and to out very convenient. Their train network specifically is well planned and works on regular tracks. They do not have need for impractical “fancy” terms / infrastructure like needed for metro. They generally have 3 types of trainsplying on these same tracks on regular intervals. Firstly, intracity trains that are the slowest of the lot (metro type) which stops on every station. Secondly, the intercity trains that stop only on major stations. And finally, trains that ply out of the country which are high speed trains. They have double decker trains that allow them to ply on lesser tracks and at regular frequencies allowing efficient transport. Inside the cities, they had also made bicycle paths so well integrated and the laws so perfect / easy to follow that most people bike everywhere. it is a perfect traffic easing solution to our problems.
    Sadly, our planners and govt. have public convenience and actual development placed last in their list of priority. Hoping it changes soon.

  2. For point 1, the Commuter Rail is what you are talking about. Let’s hope it happens soon! Metro is planned for phase 2 and might kickoff soon for this direction. For point 2. Skywalks come with their own share of woes, and are difficult for the elderly and the disabled. With elevators is one option, but implementation is always shoddy. This is not easily solved. For point 3. Commuters don’t have a choice in these matters unfortunately. Buses don’t stop at stops right after junctions. Solution is to move the stops father away from Junctions, even then buses try to hoodwink. This is an ongoing issue with BMTC. Hard to get bus drivers to behave. If you are dependent on one bus that comes every hour and then might or might not stop, people do all kinds of things to ensure they are on the bus when it turns up.

  3. Comment on trains.

    It would be great to run express commuter trains from Bangalore City station to Whitefield every 10 minutes on the regular railway lines. One can reach from Bangalore City station to Whitefield in 30 minutes with one stop at Cantonment for 2 minutes.

    1) 6:30 AM – 8:00 AM:

    Lalbagh : 6:30 AM
    Tirupati Express : 7:40 AM (Only on Mondays and Wednesdays)
    Chennai Express : 8:00 AM
    Track is free in-between times!

    2) 8:10 AM-11:00 AM:

    8:30 AM : Yeshwantpur based expresses (Only on Mon, Wed, Fri)
    9:00 AM: Sangamitra Express
    10:45 AM/10:50 AM : BNC Express/Yeshwantpur express (Only on Tue,Wed)
    11:00 AM: Seshadri Express
    Track is free in-between times!

    Similarly, in the evenings, the return track (Chennai-Bangalore) can be utilized.

    This will off-load a lot of passengers using their cars and buses from the west and south
    Bangalore commuting to Bagmane Tech Park, K.R.Puram-Marathahalli ORR,
    K.R.Puram, Hoodi, and Whitefield.

    Also, travel time is saved a lot!

    Thanks,
    Venkat.

  4. Nice Post. It’s time that we realize the seriousness of people movement inside the city.

    I have been toying with the idea of proposing STOPPING new cars registrations in Bangalore altogether, and promoting used cars sales. With this magnitude of movement of IT people, it does not make sense to add more and more new cars in the roads.

    Thanks.

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