Bengaluru: The Karnataka government has decided to set up Bengaluru Mobility Management Authority (BMMA), a body that would enable traffic management in a city that has become synonymous for vehicular congestion and extremely long travel times among other problems.
Chairing a meeting of experts and public representatives on Wednesday, Karnataka chief minister B.S.Yediyurappa announced several measures to improve mobility in a city of over 10 million people and 8 million vehicles. The meeting, specifically to address issues plaguing Bengaluru, also saw the over three month-old Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in the state discuss other challenges like waste management, improving connectivity, reducing pollution and announced new projects to decongest the city
“As per the discussions, to ease traffic on city roads, we have identified 12 corridors for separate movement of buses and bicycle riders," the chief minister's office (CMO) said in a statement late on Wednesday.
Bengaluru, also known for its technological prowess among other attributes, has been under severe pressure due to the unplanned growth of the city in the last couple of decades due to mass migration and crumbling infrastructure.
The government has been pumping money into the metro rail project that has not just got delayed but has had limited impact due to inadequate reach across the city, that extends to over 840 square kilometers.
Yediyurappa said that the metro rail link would go up to 119 kms from the present 42 kms and also that it would extend till Hosakote, on the outskirts of Bengaluru.
The decision to extend the metro to Hosakote is also being viewed politically as this is a constituency that is scheduled to go to the bypolls on 5 December. "By 2025, we will extend the metro rail line to 300 kms," Yediyurappa said.
Yediyurappa said that the government has decided to rent out an additional 6,000 buses to the existing fleet of around 6,500 buses.
The government has said it will buy electric buses to reduce pollution but challenges like inadequate charging infrastructure is something that the administration will also have to plan for.
Yediyurappa said that his government will also adopt systems to better manage its solid waste.
"Most worrying is the waste treatment in the city. We have decided to make it mandatory to adopt scientific ways to treatment solid waste," the CMO said in its statement. It acknowledged that only 2500 out of the total 4500 tonnes of waste generated in the city is being treated.