Pedestrian Subway - Change In Design

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InfrastructurePedestrian Infrastructure

In the recent past, many pedestrian underpasses have been built at various locations. However, the utility of these for pedestrian crossings has been minimal & one hardly finds pedestrians using them, unless forced to with barricades (eg. Pedestrian subway at City Railway Station, & at KBS).

This raises questions as to why they are ignored by pedestrians. One obvious reason is that everyone prefers to cross a street just about anywhere based on individual needs & requirements. The other, not so obvious reason is the discomfort in using them, especially for old people, small children, disabled people & pregnant women. The ordeal of descending about 8-9ft & climbing up again is perhaps a strain even for ordinary people when coupled with walking, sometimes long distances. Overhead walkways are even more uncomfortable for people as they have to climb even higher & then descend back to street level (about 12-15 ft or more, in some cases).

BBMP may claim to have addressed the needs of pedestrians by building these, but in the larger interests of users, a solution is necessary to ensure that these do not remain mere showpieces.

What if we make the subways as shown in the sketch above ? Position the subway midway below street level so that pedestrians need only descend about 4 feet instead of the usual 8 ft or more. Needless to say, an elevation of the road would also be necessary, stretching over a length of a mere 55 ft, or about 17 mtrs for a gradient of about 10 degrees. This rise in street level will also ensure that pedestrians do not cut across the street over this stretch & will have no option but to use the subway. Sidewalks will need to be maintained at grade, throughout & preferably barricaded for safety of all.

If designs that do not require pedestrians to physically stress themselves are adopted, such as the example above, we might see better utilization of pedestrian subways.

Appreciate your inputs & ideas in this regard.