Employees working at RMZ Eco Space Business Park, a tech hub off Outer Ring Road near Sarjapur, had a nightmarish experience recently. It took more than two hours for their vehicles to join the ORR in the evening.
A traffic cop in the area said that lack of a motorable service road intersecting the ORR causes traffic congestion in the area. “More tech parks are coming up in the area and the situation will only get worse,” he said. The road that was designed for 5,400 Passenger Car Units (PCU) per hour today chokes at 4,000 PCUs bringing out the lacunae in its design and incomplete work.
A traffic consultancy firm has now drawn up a plan to ‘remake’ the ORR at a cost of Rs. 25 crore, including providing continuous service roads on the 19-km stretch. Service roads are yet to be completed in at least half the stretch of the ORR. This even though different sections of the ORR were opened progressively between 1996 and 2002. The project includes nearly 40 bus bays and shelters at the rate of almost one on either side every kilometre. Lack of designated bus bays has led to buses stopping at the approaches to flyovers creating traffic snarls.
However, the ORR was designed with two separate flyovers with a two-lane carriageway in between, envisaged as dedicated bus lanes when Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) would be developed. Though the BRTS proposal has now been dropped, BDA is working towards designating them as dedicated bus lanes and barring buses from plying on the flyovers.
The BDA board, that met on September 23, approved the project after clearance from the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). The project will be divided into three packages and tenders called.
Sources said BDA Chairman S.K. Pattanaik has also approved the project and tenders will be called soon. BDA member (Engineering) P.N. Naik said that modalities of the tender are being worked out.Industry body driving ‘remake of ORR’
The recent traffic snarl at RMZ Eco Space Business Park triggered concern and pushed tech firms on ORR into action. The ORR Companies’ Association (ORRCA) has been holding a series of consultative meetings with traffic cops and Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), the latest on Wednesday.
Sarv Saravanan, MD, India Centre of Excellence, EMC Corporation, said that the commute on ORR had turned a serious issue that needed immediate fixing. “Even fixing small issues like service roads, organised bus bays and effective use of carriageway would go a long way,” he said, adding that the ORRCA is ready to pitch in with what they can do.
R.K. Mishra, member of BDA’s Technical Advisory Committee, said that the comprehensive plan to clear bottlenecks is being reviewed with not only traffic police, but also representatives of the companies, who are the end users. “Each metre of the 17-km stretch is being reviewed,” he said.