A footpath for care-free walking, shopping

A team of IISc has designed guidelines to improve footpaths that aim to meet the demands of hawkers and pedestrians.

Published: 22nd April 2012 03:22 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2012 10:29 PM   |  A+A-

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File photo of the recently razed Gandhi Bazaar market | Nagaraja Gadekal

BANGALORE: Walking down a congested, busy footpath and battling with street hawkers to make way, may soon become a thing of the past. The Centre for infrastructure, Sustainable Transportation and Urban Planning (CiSTUP) of Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has designed guidelines that aim to meet the demands of hawkers and pedestrians.

Ashish Verma, assistant professor, Department of Civil Engineering, said they have designed guidelines for footpaths, which would integrate street vendors and hawkers.

He said hawkers were considered to be nuisance, and though they are evicted, they go back to the same places.

Also, so far no attempt has been made to include them in policies. Even the Indian Road Congress (IRC) guidelines on footpath does not mention anything about street vendors, Ashish said.

The two-member team explored pedestrian and facility policy guidelines that integrate provisions for hawkers and street vendors.  As many as 550 hawkers/vendors and 610 pedestrians/customers were involved in the survey which was conducted at Gandhinagar, Commercial Street, Gandhi Bazaar, Madiwala, Malleswaram, Peenya II Stage and Kormangala.

He said the study was conducted on pedestrians including the speed, density and flow rate of the pedestrians, using video graphs. Also, a footpath inventory survey comprising geometric details was held.

Based on the results of the survey, the guidelines were designed.

“According to the design, there will be space for hawkers on footpath, without disturbance to pedestrian movement. If footpath is wide, there will be space for  more hawkers to put stalls on the edge and vice versa,” he said.

Footpaths were categorised into six levels, based on the space availability and pedestrian flow.

If there was more space, less or no hawkers and less pedestrians, it was categorised as  ‘A’ grade and if there was less space, more hawkers and more pedestrians, it was categorised as ‘E’ grade.

“The design aims to improve the conditions of the footpaths and upgrade them to the next version. For instance, if the footpath comes under D grade, with the design we have framed, it can be improved to C or B grade,” he added. The report has now been sent to BBMP and Department of urban land transport (DULT).

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