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"Only God can save Bangalore's pedestrians"

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InfrastructurePedestrian Infrastructure

So said Dr. Subramanya sometime in Dec 2007.  It seems that pavements are optional in Bangalore.  BBMP can spend 100s of crores on tarring roads, acquiring land for useless road widening (check out the stretch just after Domlur leading to Command Hospital), building flyovers with signals on top of them, etc etc, but has little money to spend on building and maintaining pavements.

Pedestrians are probably losers in the eyes of Bangalore's moribund civic agencies.  Footpaths can be used for parking, for riding on in case of traffic jams, for dumping and burning garbage, etc.  They have to fend for their lives at every step of the way.

If this is the best he can offer, we might as well have leave his post for God to occupy (Vidhana Soudha has a saying - "Government's Work is God's Work and they seem to have left the work to God). 

Here are some pictures that my sister-in-law sent me.  This is not a newly acquired part of Bangalore, but from Cox Town/Frazer Town.


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Rithesh's picture

More Pictures

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From Whitefield Main Road (Notice the innovate use of footpath space - especially in the 5th pic)

From KR Puram Region (taken during "Cross the damn road")

Naveen's picture

Great Pictures !

155 users have liked.

Rithesh - Many thanks.

Bangalore's Pedestrians share side-walks with garbage, cattle, stray dogs, overflows from sewage-water pipes & have to fend off two wheelers & 3-wheelers who try to jump the queues at signals or at traffic jams !  What a pity.

ravishankar's picture

Becoming extinct

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Footpaths are becoming the extinct species just like many which have perished in the past.

I still recall my teachers instructing when we were kids to use the footpath and cross the road only at zebra crossing.
Day-by-day i see each one of them getting narrower for the sake of road widening. All we have left in few years to show our children would be these photos. I guess along with "Save Trees" campaign, "Save the footpath" campaign needs to be kick started
blrpraj's picture

Who will save god though?

146 users have liked.
I found the title quite amusing, and the title actually begs a bigger question - who will save god himself?  I am sure even god cannot be saved if he is a pedestrian in any of the Indian cities let alone Bangalore.

On another note  contrast this with pictures of footpath from halfway accross the world where people primarily move by car and there are hardly any pedestrians -

The above post that i had written a long time back on praja is a must read to understand the fundamentals of why we cannot provide decent footpaths.
Ravi_D's picture

If Penguins can....

vinita's picture

" 58% of accident victims in Bangalore are pedestrians"

154 users have liked.
thats what Prof Sreehari said in an interview to the DNA Times -22 Feb 2009. Unfortunately though his argument seemed to place the blame on trees. He said, "trees on the road and footpath obstruct street light penetration and thereby cause accidents. Trees aren't necessary for the road and are meant for the park. " Scary to think such an attitude could influence decisions. after all he is the CM's transport, traffic and infrastructure advisor.
idontspam's picture

Trees and lights

150 users have liked.

trees on the road and footpath obstruct street light penetration

That may very well be true if the lights were placed too close to the trees or they started putting up banyan and mango trees on the road side. It has to be properly done and there is something called pruning and maintenance. Different roads can have different specifications. Where median exists you can put lights on the median and trees on the sidewalk or vice versa.

Please see link below an example of how specifications are written.

But you cannot blame trees for accidents if you did not know how to plant them and maintain them properly.

Here is an article closer to home on benefits of roadside trees and urban forests.

 And finally below is a comprehensive how-to for planting and sustaining road side trees.


vinita's picture

of footpaths and pedestrians

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some more accounts of people pained by the lack of footpaths how do we walk on the footpath (that doesnt exist)? http://bangalore.citizenm... the kanakpura-ring road junction http://bangalore.citizenm...
silkboard's picture

Where do we walk?

171 users have liked.

What are the most common causes for missing pavements? Here is an observation based list:

  • Encroachment of type 1 - the justified-by-socialists type encorachment (Gandhibazaar, Marathahalli type) where the apologists say "where will these poor vendors go".
  • Encorachment of type 2 - the little-bold type where small businesses or even residencs spread out on the pavements by way of using them for parking or storage.
  • Construction on pavements - Very common sight these days
  • Transformers or utilities on pavements - these situations heppen because of ill-planned road widening exercises. New comers to the town blame BESCOM etc - "what the hell is a transformer doing on the pavement". The fact of the matter is that transformers were never on the pavements, just that BBMP or BDA ate the pavements up.

Some old pics from my collection

murali772's picture

Equally bad in Delhi

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The government is supposed to be promoting "inclusive growth"- its supposed to be a government for the aam admi. But is there any attempt being made on the part of our urban planners and managers to make our cities hospitable, humane and habitable for the aam admi? I live in Delhi and I can tell you if you are a pedestrian in this city, you have to fear for your life!

For the full text by Ms Sagarika Ghose in, click here

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