Shall we walk?: ‘Nadakalama Chennai?’ (Shall we walk, Chennai?) is an initiative by Transparent Chennai to address the scarcity of pedestrian space in the city.

It focuses on walk-ability in the city and its pedestrian infrastructure. Kadambari Badami, researcher at Transparent Chennai, says, “Over the years, we have noticed that the public road space has been designed to cater to the vehicular movement, at the expense of pedestrian movement. The glaring inequity triggered this project.

It’s not just about providing footpaths in various neighbourhoods, we also want to empower the people and show them how to advocate for better pedestrian facilities.”

The project facilitates a dialogue between the government and the community, so that the fromer government understands the components of good pedestrian infrastructure and is able to comprehensively plan for it.

The project process involves building relations with different stakeholders of a community, involving community in field surveys, participation of community in design workshop to design their streets, processing to create a final design for each street, designs in an implementation plan, and follow-up work. (Kadambari in a discussion with residents)

Photo:M. Srinath