One street each in New Town and Sector V will be developed as model pedestrian-safe streets by the New Town Kolkata Development Authority (NKDA) and Nabadiganta Industrial Township authority (NDITA) respectively following the recommendations of the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).
The two streets, on which SIAM has conducted an extensive survey, are street No. 13 in Sector V that connects Wipro with the Ring Road via College More and street No. 165 in New Town. The survey was part of their CSR activities to carry out a pan-India study in Kolkata and four other cities for the National Road Safety Year 2019-2020 regarding how streets can be safer for pedestrians.
Instead of major arterial roads, these two streets were chosen for the survey so that the research team’s recommendations for pedestrians’ safety can be applied to other roads across Sector V and New Town.
Hidco, NKDA and NDITA officials, along with traffic police inspectors of New Town and Sector V, attended a workshop recently on model safe roads where the study was discussed. “Engineers of NKDA and NDITA have been asked to ensure that all the recommendations are followed for a model streets in each of the two townships. The model can be applied to other streets in the future,” said a Hidco official. The research team worked on the two streets for several months to find how small interventions can make roads safer for people. They made over 300 location-specific recommendations. For examples, they found that traffic signs have faded in some spots while branches of trees obstruct traffic signals in some other areas.
The team pointed out that in some areas, zebra crossings lead to a blocked end on the road median. In some areas, pedestrians were seen crossing the road divider or median in between traffic movement while motorists have low visibility there due to the garden hedges spreading into the road. There were also some instances of obstructions faced by pedestrians due to trees, shrubs, pillar boxes and encroachment by hawkers. In some places, the height of the footpath on the main road was found to be too high for pedestrians. The research team has recommended an optimum speed limit of 40 kmph for the two streets.
Source: Times of India