Natpac submits report on Attingal

If the authorities concerned put their act together to implement the proposals mooted by National Transportation Planning and Research Centre (Natpac), Attingal will, in the near future, be free from traffic congestion.

NATPAC, a research and development institution under the Department of Science, Technology and Environment, has come out with short-term, medium-term, and long-term measures to ease traffic congestion at the town.

As a short-term measure, the agency has advocated the need to implement one-way system from 8 a.m. to 8.30 p.m. in the town; relocation of bus stops; restricting stops of buses between the private bus stand and Veeralam on Palace Road; sealing the gutter in front of Private Bus Stand; constructing a kerb between the front side entry and exit of the bus stand.

While the medium-term measures proposed are construction of a foot-overbridge; relocation of bus stand and the KSRTC bus garage; and restricting cross movement of KSRTC buses, some of the long-term solutions suggested are widening of the existing carriageway to four or six lanes; construction of city bypass; and development of inner and outer ring-road system.

Attingal town, the study points out, is deeply congested owing to lack of adequate carriageway to cater to the growing traffic demand, particularly at intersections. Looking into the traffic volume, the study said that during peak hour, around 3,000 vehicle — which includes 1,260 cars and 1,274 two-wheelers — pass the Three Arm junction and per hour more than 3,200 pedestrians are on the road on any given day. A close look into the vehicle movement further revealed that per minute, on an average, 19 cars and 21 two-wheelers pass the junction, the survey said.

M. Pradeep, vice-chairman of the Attingal municipality, told The Hindu that the study was conducted as per the request of the civic body and the agency recently submitted its report. “We discussed the recommendations in detail. The municipality can implement these measures only with the support of the government and other agencies. A concerted effort is needed to put the suggestions in practice,” he said.

As a beginning, the municipality has decided to seek Central assistance under the Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT) for putting escalators on East and Kacheri Junctions. A detailed project report would be soon finalised and sent for government approval.

The traffic problem could have been solved by this time had the government taken steps to expedite the construction of bypass from Manampur near Kadurapalli to Mamam Old Bridge. The project was conceived several years ago and at least two notifications were issued to acquire land. But the project was yet to take off, he said.