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Ahmedabad kicks off 500-cr integrated BRTS

By Staff
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Ahmedabad, May 4 :The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) hasissued tender for the phase-I of the country's first integrated Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) for specially designed high-speed, low floor buses to cruise along a dedicated corridor.

Briefing newspersons about the project yesterday, municipal commissioner Anil Mukim said a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) is being formed to implement the Rs 500-crore project.

He said AMC expects to meet 35 per cent of the project cost from National Urban Renewal Mission (NURM), 15 per cent from Gujarat Government and the rest through internal accruals or debts.

While AMC has made budgetary provision of Rs 100-crore during the current financial year itself, he said, several public sector banks (PSBs) and financial institutions (FIs) have shown interest to fund what is being touted as a self-financed project.

The project comprises creating a 150-km long two-way corridor for 70-seat swanky buses to ply after widening the existing circular and some arterial roads criss-crossing the city, removing encroachments from certain portions.

The tender issued is for the 10-km stretch of road between Naroda and Thakkar Bapanagar in phase-I at a cost of Rs 75-crore, to be completed in 18-24 months after finalising the bid. Tender will be issued for another 8-km Naroda-Chiloda stretch next month, as part of phase-I, he said.

Mr Mukim justified the project to handle the growing traffic of Greater Ahmedabad, as its population is projected to increase from 4.5 million in 2001 to 10 million by 2051.

He observed that the city just cannot afford any more private vehicles. While five per cent of its population own a car, 39 per cent own two-wheelers. There are still 34 per cent of population who bicyle their way and 22 per cent have no vehicle.

As many as 35 two-tier cities in the world have BRTS, including five in China, besides North and Latin America and Europe.

The detailed plan has been prepared by Ahmedabad-based Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology (CEPT) University, headed by its director Dr R N Vakil and Prof H M Shivanand Swamy as its team leader, after conducting an extensive survey of the city's traffic pattern.

UNI

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