Open House: Should UT scrap the tribune chowk flyover project?

Flyover is not a solution to traffic congestion

HARISH KAPUR:Chandigarh well known for its greenery is suffering at the hands of the authorities due to wrong planning.

Flyover is not a solution to traffic congestion

A map of the proposed flyover at the Tribune Chowk in Chandigarh. file photo

ROBINSINGH@TRIBUNE.COM

Chandigarh well known for its greenery is suffering at the hands of the authorities due to wrong planning. The proposal of flyover that will connect Zirakpur to Tribune Chowk was supposed to be implemented at the cost of felling of over 700 trees. This is not at all justified as we are already facing environmental crisis and increased pollution. The stay on this decision has come as a welcome move. The proposal of construction of flyover is redundant as there are other ways to manage traffic like installation of traffic signals at all T-points, encouraging car-pooling and strict enforcement of traffic rules. The construction of the flyover will ruin the city's character. This proposal must be dropped with immediate effect.

Dr Shruti K Chawla, Chandigarh


Plant five times the treees uprooted

The Tribune flyover project announced by Nitin Gadkari in 2016 is in doldrums at present.  The purpose was to ease traffic, which is growing at a fast pace. The initial plan was to link it to Zirakpur flyover at the cost of Rs 1,600 crore. However, it was the NHAI, which reduced the length of the project. The environmental impact assessment felt that a large number of trees will be uprooted although a few could be replanted in different areas. This problem should have been visualised before sanctioning the project. To go ahead with the project and in the present scenario it should be mandatory for the Administration to plant five times the uprooted trees so that environment remains unaffected. The authorities should keep in mind as the number of vehicles are multiplying day by  day and it may take at three years to complete the project by that time trees will also grow to check the pollution.

Harish Kapur, Chandigarh


Scrap plan to construct flyover

The plan for the construction of flyover especially at Tribune Chowk to mitigate traffic problems is good, but at the cost of cutting 700 fully mature trees of rare species is a matter of concern. The move to build the flyover also violates Chandigarh master plan. The authorities should scrap this plan and think about some other alternatives to curb traffic menace in that area.

Nakhpreet Kaur, Sanghol


Don't compromise with city’s heritage 

As many would agree much has been said and written about the Tribune flyover project, but without any tangible outcome. Much heat has been generated by city residents and experts ever after the announcement in this regard. Had those at the helm of affairs done a bit of ground work before mulling over furthering the project keeping in mind the spirit of the master plan it would not have met similar fate as the much-hyped proposal of dismantling roundabouts to clear the way for the Metro project and compromise heritage character of the city. The court should direct the stakeholders to come out with viable solution than working on the proposed flyover project. There is an urgent need to mull over underpasses to connect tricity areas. Thrust should be primarily on constructing ring roads.          

Ramesh K Dhiman, Chandigarh


Rope in experts to formulate plans

Construction on ground should not be allowed to manage traffic at any place in Chandigarh. It will be in violation of original plan of the City Beautiful and heritage of Le Corbusier. Any transportation system on ground will require lots of land, which is not easily available. This is why RITES planned underground Metro, which was scraped for non-technical reasons. The Tribune flyover plan should be scraped immediately. Underpasses should be considered for congested crossings in the city. Experts should be roped in for making plans.

Bharat Bhushan Sharma, Chandigarh


A losing proposition

Basic layout of Chandigarh should not be compromised at any cost.  Undesired idea of any flyover is alien to the structural dignity of Chandigarh.  It’s only driving aggressiveness of people (containable), which causes road congestion at peak hours otherwise city has enough road infrastructure.   Cutting trees for cemented construction is losing proposition. Flyovers will ruin heritage character of the city.  Hence idea should be scrapped by the authorities concerned.

MPS Chadha, Chandigarh


it is against city’s architectural plan

Experts have a different view about the Tribune flyover. Some say that there is no need of flyover as it will destroy original beauty of Chandigarh. It is against the basic architectural plans. There are different views. One known green judge said trees are more needed than the flyover. The heritage status of the city should be kept in mind while taking up any additional construction. This may go a long way to realise dream of Jawharlal Nehru and Le Coribusier and his team to make Chandigarh, which is known in the world a City Beautiful.

Vidya Sagar Garg, Panchkula


Consider interest of public

The problem of the flyover at the Tribune Chowk (roundabout) should be resolved systematically. One  should move with the time. The Chandigarh Administration and the High Court should consider interest of the public. Everyone faces pollution and loses valuable time due to traffic jams. The Administration should construct underpass bridges at roundabouts instead of flyover. More trees should be planted on both sides of underpasses before cutting present trees. Underpass bridges will not dilute heritage character of the city as envisioned by its architect Le Corbusier.

Sumesh Kumar Badhwar, Chandigarh


Ponder over long-term projects

There is lack of vision and proper planning, no feasibility study of the projects and coordination between stakeholders. This has resulted inb scraping Metro project and delayed start of international flights from Chandigarh. Taking heritage of the city into account is fine, but not at the cost of daily commuting. Need based development such as the Tribune flyover is required to prevent traffic congestion and pollution. But, this flyover will ease traffic at one intersection only. Therefore, the Administration should think about long-term projects and revive Metro and expedite proposed outer ring road. This would decongest city roads besides leading to integrated development and economic growth of the tricity.

Col (retd) Balbir Mathauda, Chandigarh


Seek public opinion on all projects

In absence of adequate public transport facilities in Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula people manage through personal conveyance. This chokes roads and creating traffic woes. To mitigate traffic problems a study conducted in 2009 recommended construction of under passes, but this report never saw the light of the day. Though Tribune Chowk witnesses lesser traffic than Housing Board Chowk and Sector 26 light point, yet its was chosen for construction of the flyover. High-rise structure in and within the periphery of the city will destroy its very basic character besides affecting landscaping and ecology. Any new project conceptualised for Chandigarh must be deliberated. Experts/public opinion must be obtained on all projects. The fly project must be dumped and work on providing underpasses expedited. Construction of ring road in the tricity periphery is another option to reduce congestion on city roads.

SS Arora, Mohali


Rope in Experts for some solution

Roundabouts of the city are beautifully decorated with ornamental plants. Moreover, heritage and environment should be kept in mind before planning construction of flyover in the city.  Lot many trees will be cut for the Tribune flyover project. Some other solution may be brought into picture by roping in experts to remove frequent traffic snarls.

MR Bhateja, Chandigarh


Speeding vehicles will create chaos  

The High Court order to stay Tribune Chowk flyover is in the right direction. The flyover project may be helpful for smooth running of vehicles coming from outside, but the City Beautiful will lose original architectural character. Secondly, the speeding vehicles would certainly create chaotic situation. Around 40 years ago, Chandigarh was unique because of lot of open space and greenery. Land cannot be stretched. Unmindful construction should not be allowed. The authorities should find some other options to reduce traffic congestion. We must restrict our desire for more vehicles. Residents' views should be considered for better results.

Sukhpal Singh, Chandigarh


City's heritage is in danger

The heritage of the City Beautiful is in danger and that too not from external elements, but its own representatives and planners as also decision makers and bureaucrats. The entire planning for the destruction of the basic structure of India’s first planned smart city is being done under the stewardship of none other than MP Kirron Kher. It all started with the Mono Rail project, which was scrapped. Now it is the turn of the Tribune flyover project, which again was a pet of the MP, and now has to be put in the store of the UT Urban Planning Department. The notified Master Plan 2031 of Chandigarh clearly states that over bridges and flyovers will never be constructed in the city. The need of the hour is a comprehensive and holistic plan. No environmental impact assessment (EIA) for this project has been undertaken. Moreover, Rs 200 crore flyover project is detrimental to GMCH-32 silence zone norms. The comprehensive mobility plan undertaken by French firm suggested four modes of public transport, including a combination of light rail transit (LRT), the bus rapid transit system (BRTS), modern tram and monorail on different road corridors, but never recommended any flyover. The UT Urban Planning Department must seriously review the Tribune flyover project.

Rajiv Boolchand Jain, Chandigarh


Widen roads by two metres

The proposal to construct the Tribune flyover in Sector 29 should be scrapped altogether by the authorities. Instead, the authorities should widen existing roads by one or two metres on both sides, including the Tribune Chowk. Even other similar roundabouts in the city should be broadened wherever necessary. This will certainly reduce traffic congestion on roads to a greater extent.

RK Kapoor, Chandigarh


UT must not become Metro

The UT Administration's plan to build the Tribune Flyover should be scrapped by the authorities at the earliest as this is against the basic architectural plans of Chandigarh. Moreover, we Chandigarhians are already creating a concrete jungle in our City Beautiful, which has marred beauty of our city. Le Corbusier's dreams are shattered whenever we think of making skyscrapers or such big flyovers. Some alternate ways to tackle the traffic rush should be found out. Chandigarh is not only known in India, but throughout the world for its fine architectural plans. The Administration should not transform it into any metropolitan city. Hope the authorities concerned will pay attention to the request.

Bir Devinder Singh Bedi, Chandigarh


Revive Metro Rail project

Judicial intervention (some term it activism) has often acted as saviour against vested interests. Myopic planning has been the bane not only in Mohali and Panchkula but in Chandigarh too. Bypass from Kharar via Banur crossing the Ambala-Chandigarh road and terminating at Panchkula's Sectors 20-21 dividing road when fully operational will take bulk of interstate traffic. New developments over time will render proposed flyover in Chandigarh redundant. This calls for abandoning the Tribune flyover plan for good. Best would be to lay additional road for local traffic beyond the existing row of grown-up trees (retaining them) on either side of Dakshin Marg. Metro Rail project must be revived forthwith to decongest roads. A developed city is not the one where poor people use cars, but it is the one where the rich use the public transport.                            

Lalit Bharadwaj, Chandigarh


Scrapping flyover plan not an option

Scrapping the plan of constructing the Tribune Chowk flyover is not an option here. Everyone is well aware of the traffic situation at the Tribune Chowk. Traffic jams not only cause delay but also wastage of fuel. Everything has its pros and cons. Flyover will have its own benefits and drawbacks. Nevertheless, if the authorities consider only negatives they may have to think about other ways to deal with the problem as traffic jams are only going to increase with time.

Tanishka Pawar, Chandigarh


High Court stay was expected

Recent stay of the High Court on the Tribune Chowk flyover was expected. Chandigarh is already overburden by pollution. This affects the beauty of the city. Chandigarh is a planned city and if this plan is scrapped it will become mini Delhi which is full of garbage, pollution and population. So, construction should be stopped here and some alternate way should be found to handle the traffic mess.

Avinash Goyal, Chandigarh


Decrease size of roundabouts

The plan to construct the Tribune Chowk flyover must be scrapped by the authorities concerned. The size of roundabouts can be decreased at busiest traffic intersections. Illegally occupied places along roads should be vacated. It will help in widening roads as well and ease the flow of traffic.

Sohan Lal Gupta, Patiala


Elevated road will create traffic mess

While getting the Metro Rail project for the tricity pushed under the carpet obviously for political reasons an alternative to ease traffic hassles - the  Tribune Chowk flyover - was presented to city residents by Kirron Kher as a better option on the plea that  Metro Rail will not be in sync with City's heritage status. In a tearing hurry, she managed to secure a verbal nod of Union Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari within 48 hours. Neither she nor the Union Minister could foresee the problems that such a gigantic structure could create, including immense pollution after cutting a huge number of well grown trees and blocking visibility during construction as  also after its becomes a ground reality. At every light signal crossing vehicles coming from elevated and underground roads will get stuck in huge traffic jams both on the east- west and north-south ends of the Tribune Chowk. Flyover will create more traffic hassles and time loss. Majority of city's commuters feel that Metro Rail for the tricity is still a better option and must be given a push particularly after the High Court's stay on the Tribune Chowk flyover. 

SC Luthra, Chandigarh


Flyover will make commuting easier

Government is simply wasting time again and again by taking and then staying the decision. Flyover is need of the hour. Chandigarh was planned for a small population. But with passage of time population has increased due to migration, job opportunities, urban development. People daily commute to peripheral towns for work that has lead to traffic congestion. Government must come up with flyover to enable commuters reach their destination with ease and reduce traffic congestion. Subway is another option. Greenery can be restored by planting trees at some other places. Flyover can be constructed while keeping in mind minimum changes to the architectural plan.

Abhilasha Gupta, Mohali


UT ignored city’s  architectural plan

How come the UT Administration ignored the Chandigarh architecture plan and gave nod for building the Tribune flyover. Chandigarh is a planned city. The authorities cannot touch City Beautiful without knowledge of its planning. The Administration should not make fool of itself and waste time and money. A cap should be put on loading the city.

Opinder Kaur Sekhon, Chandigarh


Axing trees no less than criminal activity

It’s heartening to see the Hon'ble Punjab and Haryana High Court intervening in the matter of axing trees on Dakshin Marg and Purv Marg to start construction for city’s first ever flyover at Tribune Chowk. Cutting of so old and well-maintained trees on both sides of these roads is nothing less than a criminal activity. So, it shouldn’t be allowed at all. Chandigarh will also look like any other normal city of the country having concrete jungle of high rise buildings and flyovers and with areas below flyovers converting into garbage dumps and beggars sleeping. Some other measures like widening of roads (wherever possible), more traffic lights, better traffic control during peak hours, car pooling,   mono  and underground Metro Rail provisioning should have been thought off.

Sanjay Chopra, Mohali


Infra under lot of stress

The conflict between heritage status and urban development will go on. Rapid development around Chandigarh has bought its existing infrastructure under a lot of stress. With flyovers and MRTS a no go the Administration needs to think out of the box and come up with a effective solution urgently.

Sikander Singh, Chandigarh


QUESTION

Six heritage items from Chandigarh, including an illuminated reading table of Panjab University library, were auctioned in Paris recently. In the past, too, heritage furniture from city hasbeen auctioned in the USA and London. Do you think the UT Administration is doing enough to protect city’s heritage items?

Suggestions in not more than 70 words can be sent to openhouse@tribunemail.com

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