DoTM readies new measures to ease city trafficThe Department of Transport Management (DoTM) has said it will introduce new initiatives starting Sunday to ease the Capital’s city traffic woes.
The Department of Transport Management (DoTM) has said it will introduce new initiatives starting Sunday to ease the Capital’s city traffic woes.
As one of its measures to keep the Capital roads, especially the Ring Road, free of large vehicles, the DoTM has said Sunday onwards, all long-haul buses plying to and from Kathmandu have to make the Gongabu Bus Park as their base.
Buses for several districts have been making Gaushala, Koteshwor and Sorhakhutte as their base, from where they pick passengers.
The DoTM has concluded that such haphazard movements of such buses, which are bigger in size compared to city buses, cause traffic congestion in Kalanki, the main entry point to Kathmandu.
“Long-route vehicles will have to depart from or arrive at the Gongabu Bus Park via the Kalanki-Sitapaila-Balaju route,” DoTM Spokesperson Tok Raj Pandey said. “This will ensure there are no haphazard movements of long-haul buses along the Ring Road.”
Those flouting the rule will be liable to pay a fine of Rs 5,000, according to the DoTM.
Likewise, the DoTM has said it will from the start of the new fiscal year 2017-18 begin the process of re-designing public transport routes for enhancing effective traffic management in the Kathmandu valley.
The DoTM aims to reduce the number of routes for public vehicles to 66 from existing 200. The government body has concluded that higher number of such routes has resulted in traffic congestion, increasing accidents and pollution.
From Sunday, route permit will be granted under the new scheme. The government has segregated 66 routes into three parts on the basis of priority. Of them, eight major routes in Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur, along with the Ring Road, are the DoTM’s topmost priority.
The DoTM said it aims to gradually reduce the number of routes. “It will be a slow process. We will give permits based on new design from Sunday. At the same time we will be phasing out old routes,” Pandey said.
The Valley’s population stands at around four million, including those arriving in the Capital for various tasks.
Higher population density and demand for urban mobility have prompted the people to use small vehicles such as two-wheelers, cabs and small-sized buses, among others resulting to severe traffic congestion. The government has already initiated process for replacing small vehicles with big ones.
The government in the budget for the fiscal year 2014-15 reduced customs duty to 5 percent on the imports of vehicles having capacity of more than 40 seats. Since then, a number of players from public and private sectors have introduced buses with more than 40 seats.