……on the busy Hadapsar road.
Wait, let me start from the beginning.
Residents of Bangalore might be aware of the Double Road Flyover. It carries the distinction of being the only(?) flyover which has a traffic signal at the top. Yup, it defeats the very purpose of the flyover.
So, the city planners of Pune thought they could better this score. They put their heads together and must have come up with the solution in this way….
Senior City Planner1(SCP1) : The traffic on Hadapsar road is bad. Being the highway and all…we have to do something about it.
Young Engineer Recruit (YER) : Sir, I have a plan. Why dont we construct a flyover??
SCP1 : Exactly what I was going to say before you interrupted me.
YER : Sorry Sir-ji.
SCP1 : Its ok. Mind that tongue next time. So, we need a flyover. Lets make a nice big 80 ft wide one.
YER : Good idea Sir-ji.
Senior City Planner2(SCP2) : Lets make it an 8 lane flyover. 4 on each side.
YER : Good idea Sirji. That should solve the traffic problems.
Senior City Planner3(SCP3): hmmm… I was thinking….we should have a footpath for pedestrians on both sides. and also cycle tracks.
YER : Err….umm actually sirji, shouldn’t the flyover be only for vehicles??
SCP3 : (rubbing his belly) Rubbish!! People in our country have become FAT. We need to give them some exercise. Walking will help them reduce. So will cycling.
YER : But sir, the stretch we are marking for flyover is very large. It will be too much of a distance. What if someone wants to walk over to a place midway near the flyover.
SCP2 : Hmmm…Hmmm..Oh well, let them just walk ALL the way till the end and then take a turn to go under the flyover.
YER: (absolutely bewildered at this plan)..Er….ummmm …ok .
SCP1 : Have you taken down these notes?? yes? Good. Also add that two of the lanes will be dedicated to BRTS*.
YER : BRTS?? But sir, our fleet of buses is very low to implement a BRTS.
SCP2 : (condescending ) YER!! Will you ever learn!! We may have only a few buses now…but we do plan to grow, right?
YER : (to himself)…..yeah…. grow like 1 bus added to the route in 1 year!!
SCP2 : Out with it boy, you said something?
YER : Not really sir ji. I was just marveling at the plan.
SCP1 : Yeah…we need to make something that is beyond comparison. Something that can never be replicated. A Masterpiece.
YER: Absolutely sir. Am sure this kind of flyover will NEVER EVER be made again!!!
SCP1 : (on a high now) OHH! I know how we can better it. Do one thing…add a couple of bus-stops on it.
YER : Bus-stops!! Really sir ji…?!!
SCP1 : Of course. What if someone wants to get off on the BRTS route??
YER: But sirji, who would want to get off midway on a busy flyover!!
SCP1 : You never know with people. They like getting off buses anywhere. You add those bus stops.
YER : But Sirji…where will these people go??? They’ll be stranded in the middle of the flyover!!!
SCP1 : Hmmm…I hadn’t thought of that…wait….hmmmmm…hmmmmm
SCP3 : I have an idea…. Lets do one thing. Lets make a hole at the top and make a stairwell that goes down to the road below.
SCP1 : Great idea
SCP2 : Beat THAT, town-planners-of-other-cities!!!
(All SCPs nodding their heads in agreement and smiling at each other and their own intelligence)
YER : (rolling his eyes) Right!! A Hole. At the top of the flyover. Great!!
SCP : Learn all you can boy….you’ll never come across a plan like this again.
YER: Really sirji…I don’t think I’ll EVER come across a plan like this again. (to himself) and Thank GOD for it!!
…….and thats how the Hadapsar highway flyover came into existence.
So it has 4 lanes on each side.
1st lane : for pedestrians.
2nd lane : for cyclists
4th lane : BRTS
The 3rd lane??
Its for all the other measly vehicles including cars, 2-wheelers, jeeps, private buses, trucks, trailers,autos, tempos, etc.
There a 2 bus-stops near the top. And there is a hole with a stairwell to help people walk down to the road below.
So, if you happen to be a pedestrian standing at one end of the flyover and want to reach some place on the right side, you have to walk the 1.5km stretch, reach the other end, brave the traffic to cross the road and then go under the flyover. The other option is to brave the traffic at the top of the flyover and scoot down the hole with the stairwell!!
And dont stop praying while you choose your path.
*BRTS : Bus Rapid Transport System. Under which, dedicated road tracks are made available for public transport, like buses. Other vehicles are not allowed on the BRTS track.
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