Special Correspondent

CII suggests alternative solutions to improve urban mobility

CHENNAI: Creating dedicated bus lanes for the IT sector on Old Mahabalipuram Road, replicating the Zip Car model for carpooling, using IT-based solutions for transport sectors and introducing common pay system for multi-modal transport are some of the suggestions made by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) as part of the City Connect Program.

Talking to The Hindu here on Friday, CII Tamil Nadu Chairman Gopal Srinivasan said they were suggesting alternative solutions to improve urban mobility by thinking ahead for the next 30 years. Building flyovers, grade separators, satellite towns or introducing metro rails could give some relief, but were not lasting solutions.

After deliberating with experts from the University of Michigan, University of Chicago, Goloco (a service that help public to share a ride) and Zip Car (car pooling system), CII officials had suggested steps to solve multi dimension problem by involving public and private sectors. Low cost solutions could be provided to the public by using IT in a big way.

Use of technology

Mr. Gopal Srinivasan said: “Imagine what type of congestion 1,500 buses would create on a busy road like OMR during peak hours. These buses ply between 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. We are asking the Transport authorities how to use them intelligently for better productivity. Similarly IT, GPS and RFID technology can be used to find out the movement of buses. A simple SMS can help us to get the required information.”

Hub for transport systems

“Like hailstorm we come out with ideas one after another. It is for the experts to decide which one would suit the city. If Bogoto, the most dangerous city in the world, can be transformed into a busiest place by devising separate bus lanes, bicycle lane, walking lanes etc, why can’t it be tried in Chennai? The crime rate in Bogota has come down and today it is Columbia’s largest business centre. We have to create a hub for six to eight transport systems that converge everything. A common pay system will enable people to shun their personal vehicles and use public transport,” he added.