Bangalore is the fastest growing city in the country, in Asia or for that matter in the world are very commonly heard statements about Bangalore these days. As a Bangalorian staying in the city for nearly five decades would certainly agree with the fact that the city is growing fast, particularly for past two to two and a half decade. But unfortunately the growth as we Bangaloreans know is unscientific and haphazard. Everybody wants to come to Bangalore from distant places in the state as well as from far off places in the country in search of living. As a result population has grown to the extent of almost about fifteen times compared to 1955.
Easy availability of comparatively quite and economical labour and skilled workers, the city attracted lot of industrialist to start industries. Industrial growth during the 60s and 70s was at its peak. Then came IT industry. The city got its title silicon valley. Centre’s liberalised industrial policy gave boost to IT industry. Bangalore became the choice destination for investments, in view of its salubrious climate and its topography. Today IT industry in Bangalore is on the top in the world map. Yes, really Bangalore is developed, industrially too.
But, the city has not developed its infrastructure though it has grown vast to an unimaginable magnitude taking its population to six million. The roads in the erstwhile city limits have remained to be the same as they were in 50s even today. The roads in newly added layouts are not wide enough and are not to the required standards. The roads are not tarred for long and are full of pot holes and are difficult for monitoring. The footpaths are not worthy to be called user worthy. The city’s development, without the development of infrastructure, is not a good sign.
There is no proper planning for improving the roads which cannot take the present ever increasing traffic. The traffic has increased abnormally with the growth of automobile trade and liberalised bank finances. In fact the present situation it is said, almost every house hold in the city, in most of the segments, have more than one vehicle. In the 50s one could count the four wheelers and scooters moving on the roads, unimaginable!
It is said that in Bangalore there are in all about 21.85 lakhs vehicle running in Bangalore’s sub standard roads. Of these 16.06 lakhs are two wheelers. Apart from this every day about 700 vehicles are being added. The reason for such large number of vehicles is only because of poor and inadequate public transport. In addition to the fast moving automobile vehicles there are slow moving animal driven and men driven vehicles like pushing carts, etc, causing congestion and traffic jams.
With the addition of 700 vehicles every month the situation will certainly be grim. We are to some extent now immune to the traffic jams in almost areas of the city. It is difficult to imagine the road scenes in the next couple of years. To reach from one end to the other end of the city it takes not less than two hours. With the annual growth of vehicles population and the bad roads, the situation does not augur well. But nothing can be stalled. The people concerned with the development of the city’s infrastructure only have to rise to the situation and should be able to respond favourably to the expectation of the citizens. If situation is allowed to continue in the present state, we may have to look to the almighty helplessly. Hope that situation will not come.
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