Bangalore has added vehicles to its roads at a faster rate than its population growth in the last 10 years. Each year, five lakh new vehicles hit the city’s roads, adding pressure to the congested roads. Currently, the city of 95 lakh people has 41.56 lakh vehicles.
According to the government’s infrastructure department, over 5,000 roads in the city have surpassed their carrying capacity.
The 10 Regional Transport Offices (RTO) in the city register 2,000 two-wheelers and 100-150 cars each working day of the year.
“Of the eight lakh cars registered in the city from March 2011 to March 2012, 25 per cent are in the luxury segment. As the standard of living goes up, so is the purchasing power and an average family today owns at least two cars and one two-wheeler,” said Shafi Ahmed, a retired RTO officer.
Experts point out that the poor end-to-end connectivity provided by public transport is the main reason why people buy private vehicles.
“Bangalore’s roads are bursting at their seams. The city has one vehicle for every two people compared to Delhi that has one vehicle for four people and Mumbai that has one for eight people. Poor public transport is to be blamed,” said R K Misra, urban infrastructure expert.
Meanwhile, other experts believe that more than cars, the increasing number of two-wheelers is posing a bigger challenge.
“One peculiarity true of Bangalore is that it is leading in the number of two-wheelers. Considering the statistics, things will only get worse,” said V Ravichandar, urban infrastructure expert and chairman, Feedback Consulting.