Thursday, June 22, 2006

you might be aware that several urban areas like bangalore, chennai, hyderabad, etc that are considering metro solutions based on the example of delhi.

in delhi it cost 165 crore per km for the metro (no spelling mistakes here. it is crore not lakhs). in bangalore the estimate is 178 crore per km. also in delhi it seems the passengers taking metro is just 4.5 lakhs per day instead of projected 15 lakhs per day. only 1/3rd of estimated passengers take the metro.

instead of jumping on metro route, ahmedabad seems to be taking the brt (bus rapid transport) route. there is a very good article at . the estimate on cost is 7.5 crore per km (almost 1/10th of bangalore metro).

why are we concerned what route an urban area takes. after all urban areas are well to do with good schools, colleges, hospitals, flow of money, wealthy people, swanky hospitals, software boom, millionaries, finance centers, etc, etc. so why do we care what route a city takes?

the answer: our urban areas must have low-input, low-cost, low-resource urbanisation. the huge money that is being spend per km in a metro is not coming free. it is the our, the tax payer, money (compounded by yearly interest) that is being diverted to ill-fitting solutions and gleefully funded by national and international organisations.

the same money can be used for social sector schemes, environmental restoration, pollution control efforts, hugely neglected public education, rural economy, agriculture research, self help groups,abysmal public urban-rural health, biofuels initiative, etc, etc.

the metro, looks to me, that we have to show the world that are we fast progressing on 'developedment'.


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