AHMEDABAD: When you try to hire an auto during peak hours from the western city parts to the walled city, chances are, you might find none. The reason is -even auto drivers dread the choc-a-block traffic of the walled city. As the city traffic police starts a drive against roadblocks in areas like Kalupur, Karanj and Khadia, TOI takes a look at the major traffic issues of the walled city.

According to the city traffic police officials, the two major roads leading to Kalupur railway station from Karanj and from Ellisbridge are under scrutiny. After introduction of BRTS track fromEllisbridge to Kalupur, the road available for other vehicles has become narrower and created bottlenecks. On Relief Road, the main issue is on-the-road parking, said officials. Other areas like Khadia,Madhavpura, Dariyapur and Shahpur have issues like lack of traffic signals, traffic personnel and traffic inflow which give more problems than the narrower roads can offer.

Dinesh Parmar, deputy commissioner of police (traffic), told TOI that they are concentrating on trouble spots. “For a start, we have launched a campaign against wrong parking in the walled city areas, especially around BRTS tracks and market areas to reduce congestion. We have also sought support from the traders in areas like Kalupur where we want them to designate parking space for the members and visitors. Last but not the least, we have deployed two teams on BRTS track after getting a number of complaints of lane violation,” he said.

Traffic officials said that violation of BRTS track has become a worrisome trend especially in Raipur, Khadia and Astodia. Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation(AMC) recently took a decision to deploy more security personnel to keep vehicles other than the buses at bay. The walled city area on an average day witnesses more than 50,000 vehicles.

“With Bhadra square off the limits for the vehicles, the traffic for Teen Darwaja and beyond is now permanently being diverted towards Relief Road. During peak hours, the traffic jams often last for more than 20 minutes. Sometimes just one wrongly parked car or an SUV can cause the jams. With limited staff and increasing number of vehicles, the issue is bound to get aggravated in time to come. Major public parking lots get full as one multi-storey parking has been proposed near Kalupur railway station. The excessive vehicles get spilled on the roads,” said a senior traffic police official.

What is the way out? The traffic cops have proposed an action plan in coordination with AMC to regularize parking and hawking zones. “The need is to identify slow moving traffic such as bicycle carriers, handcarts and bullock carts used in market and fast moving traffic of vehicles and make arrangements for both. We are also chalking out alternative routes if possible to reduce burden on a couple of roads,” said Parmar.

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