Traffic police now focus on J.C. Road

THE LATEST plan of the Bangalore city police to develop J.C. Road into a model road by November and ensure free flow of traffic on it may bring relief to thousands of motorists and pedestrians.

While introducing the Central Area Traffic plan sometime ago, the police had apparently not given serious thought to the traffic woes on the J.C. Road where traffic jams are regular. The road had never received the same priority as Mahatma Gandhi Road and Brigade Road.

The city police, with the support of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CCI) and the Bangalore Agenda Task Force (BATF), have now decided to put modern gadgets and gantry to use on J.C. Road and carry out strict enforcement of rules. Additional traffic policemen would also be posted on the road.

According to the Commissioner of Police, S. Mariswamy, J.C. Road, from Minerva Circle to Sir Puttanna Chetty Town Hall junction, will be made a zero-tolerance zone from November. Equipped with 30 simputers, traffic police would also record violations by motorists, he says.

J.C. Road is a major road that connects most parts of the Bangalore South such as Basavanagudi, Jayanagar, J.P. Nagar, Banashankari, Chamarajpet, Padmanabhanagar, and Hanumanthanagar with central and northern areas of the city.

As pointed out by an in-house survey conducted by the traffic police a few years ago, J.C. Road is the only road in the city where the quantum of vehicular traffic remains the same throughout the day.

Though the police are aware that traffic jams are regular on this road, which was made one-way in 1993, no concrete steps were taken to ease the traffic congestion.

While policemen are often seen at the beginning of the J.C. Road, near the Minerva Circle, randomly booking cases against offenders, there are hardly any of them on other parts of the road to regulate traffic.

Except at the three traffic umbrellas, near Kalasipalyam-H. Siddaiah Road junction, the old Shivaji cinema, and the Town Hall, no traffic police personnel are found on J.C. Road, on which a large number of business establishments, banks, and government offices are located.

Further, there is not a single pedestrian crossing on the road. Though, there is a zebra crossing at three places, pedestrians cannot cross the road as vehicles normally over speed and often jump signals.

Though a separate parking lot has been provided for cars by the BMP on the road, a large number of cars are seen parked on the roadside, adding to the traffic congestion. Free flow of traffic on the road is often hindered by the movement of bullock carts and push carts carrying goods from hardware and tyre shops.

According to a senior traffic police officer, the 50-metre road stretch from Town Hall to Narasimharaja square is a major traffic bottleneck on J.C. Road, which is 21 metres wide, nine metres on the Town Hall side and 12 metres on the other side. The road is capable of carrying only five to six lanes of traffic, while the present traffic flow needs about nine to 10 lanes, the officer says.

With the construction of the Sirsi Circle-Town Hall flyover, the traffic flow is "unhindered" and thus there is a clogging at the end near the Town Hall, the officer explains.

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