Ahmedabad's Planning Dilemma

October 17th, 2014, 1pm

This morning, I read DNA with great eagerness how Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation has realised its potential. Kudos to standing committee chairman Pravin Patel who called spade a spade.

I have been observing this city for too long now. This is a city with widest possible roads but there is hardly space for a two wheeler to pass through these so called ‘wide’ roads. The BRTS is a complete disaster, at least in some routes. Take for example the BRTS routes on Sola Road. No commuter from Sola Road have any utility since their destination and the route directions are completely opposite to each other. This is a classic case of poor research. Ahmedabad still doesn’t have a Railway Station where you can easily drop or collect your dear ones. It is a nightmare to go anywhere near to the Railway Station.

The main culprit is an organization named CEPT (Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology) whose fresh students are unleashed for their dissertation. They gradually go on to plan the city and earn a degree by merely presenting power point presentations. The city residents suffer due to their lack of geography, culture and local domain expertise leaving the city in ruins. When I blame CEPT, AMC is also equally responsible. They shied away from understanding the needs of the local communters. The result is that private vehicles have increased manifold on the road. What was once an easy ride through any part of the city is now the most unpleasent.

AMC seems to have realised that it has great experienced planners who can do wonders. Rightfully AMC standing committee chairman Pravin Patel declined the services of CEPT for its designing and planning. What have been done can’t be undone but this decision seems to be very wise.

He told DNA, “We want to fix liability for every work. Our deputy commissioner and engineers will do such work next time. We do not want a consultancy, which just does multimedia presentations and does not take responsibility. We want to ensure that not a single rupee of our citizens is wasted.”

Read between the lines. Multimedia presentations and no responsibility. A city exists for its inhabitants and not for any experiment of any university.

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Binu Alex

Jack of all master of none. Reckless Thinker, Bad writer, Tech lover, Safe Driver in Dry Republic of Gujarat. 2 decades in print, web and radio. Unglorified tweeter. No Admirers. Unlimited Foes, Endless envy. Not to be loose shunted

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