March 31, 2009

Pune’s Traffic Woes, Infrastructure Will Be Top Priority

PUNE: Resolving the city’s traffic and transportation problems will be top priority for next two years with main focus on implementation of the
metro rail project, MP Suresh Kalmadi said on Monday.

Kalmadi visited The Times of India office on Monday and shared his views on the forthcoming elections and the city’s infrastructure development plan.

“We are trying to look for solutions to the city’s traffic problems. We mooted the sky bus proposal but it was scrapped as there were technical snags. Now, we are working on the metro rail project. A detailed report for implementation of the project is ready and the system will be functional in a few years’ time,” said Kalmadi.

He strongly defended the BRTS saying that it has been implemented world over for improving the state of different public transport systems. “The BJP is criticising the BRTS, but the fact is that the BJP government itself has implemented the system in Ahmedabad and Indore. I have made efforts to get JNNURM funds sanctioned for Pune’s infrastructure development. Recently, the JNNURM also sanctioned funds for buses on the BRTS route. Pune is the only city to get these funds. Though the traffic problems prevails, efforts are being made to look for solutions,” said Kalmadi. He admitted that despite repeatedly talking to the railway minister, Pune has been neglected in consecutive railway budgets.

“With Commonwealth Youth Games (CYG), city’s infrastructure received a major boost. We need another event to further raise the standards of infrastructure and this push may come with the Commonwealth Games, due to be held in New Delhi. Though the games are being organised in New Delhi, some events will take place in Pune,” said Kalmadi, adding that there was need to increase the FSI in cantonment area.

“I don’t want to be complacent and want everyone to work hard to ensure victory. I hope to maintain the vote margin we achieved during the last elections. However, victory is victory irrespective of the winning margin. The BSP candidate will eat into BJP’s Brahmin votes and Congress votes from slums. But my fight is with the BJP candidate,” said Kalmadi.

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Pune’s Traffic Woes, Infrastructure Will Be Top Priority

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