Building of more flyovers in cities were only aiding the personal car-owners, Urban Development Minister Jaipal Reddy on Monday said and maintained that the focus should be on expanding the new-age public transport systems like Metro and BRT.
“We are building flyovers (in cities) for cars only. Even buses can’t go. The two-wheelers cannot use them,” he told a national conference on ‘good governance towards improved basic urban service’ organised by TERI here.
He said the focus should be on urban public transport and that there is a need for expansion of Metro in Delhi and other cities of the country.
Mr. Reddy said apart from Metro, the ministry was looking at bus-based public transport and highlighted the importance of the Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) in which exclusive lanes are reserved for the buses. He said this was cheaper than the Metro and the people have also liked it.
The minister said that 15,250 low-floor semi-luxury buses have been introduced in 62 cities under the JNNURM.
“That is the only way to convince the aspiring urban middle classes to give up personal cars and go for public transport,” Mr. Reddy said adding that this will help save fuel, reduce traffic jams and pollution.
Noting that this will lead to better living in urban areas, Mr. Reddy said that more than 90 per cent of the funds under JNNURM, which is over Rs one lakh crore, has gone on improving basic services like drinking water, drainage, slum improvement and housing for the poor.