Walk-able cities are liveable cities. The quality of local pedestrian environment is described as a fundamental yardstick of urban living. The Comprehensive Transportation Study (CTS) for the Hyderabad Metropolitan Area taken up by Lea Associates for the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) has noted the abysmal facilities for pedestrians in the city.
Footpath space is not ‘pedestrian-friendly’ given the uneven surfaces, frequent level differences leading to uneven steps, poorly maintained (dust and garbage ridden) and improperly set up traffic signs, electric poles, telephone junction boxes, apart from they being insufficiently lit, the study said.
Calling for policy guidelines to make Hyderabad a ‘walk-able’ metropolis, it describes the pedestrian mode as the primary and not an alternative mode and goes on to add that “walking is the original mode of travel and essential to all others”.
The report points out that due to lack of cross-walk and footpath space, pedestrians are forced to share the road carriageway with moving vehicles leading to accidents.
It is even more difficult for the physically challenged and elderly with mobility impairment.
Approximately 35 per cent of trips are considered to be on foot.