How do we save our cities?Travelling between cities like Mumbai and Pune, is a pleasure and a routine for thousands of people. May be, some seven lakh people every day, but train, bus, car and what have you. For business, for pleasure, for personal reasons or whatever.
But, have we ever calculated the pollution? Yes, we are so much amazed by the billions made by the service sector in Mumbai, through very creative work. For example, the vada pav guys, from whom you can still buy vada pav for Rs.10 apiece, or even less, laughs all the way to the bank, richer by Rs.2000 at the end of the day. (some estimate the earnings even higher).
But what happens to the human beings and their energy? If a human being travels for at least two hours to work, in the metros and even more in cities like Bangalore, what will happen to their productivity?
Why are we not re-locating our offices to the suburbs and then systematically developing such suburbs? Why is that the only development ( whatever that means), is always done only by the private sector?
Take Chennai city for example. It has grown by leaps and bounds. On the southern side, today, there are hundreds of thousands, who travel from distances that are seventy kilometers or more, everyday, for work. The city center, where we have all the offices, has not a centimeter left for development, and all new buildings are those that are done by demolishing the old ones.
Touch wood, the previous DMK Government saw the need for flyovers and implemented the same, throughout the city. This is exactly why the traffic keeps moving, though there are traffic jams at so many places. Yet, Chennai is one hundred times better than Bangalore, where traffic jams are very huge.
How do we save our cities? By imposing a ban on fresh construction at some places? For instance, Whitefield in Bangalore, was sought to be developed as a suburb. But today, it resembles a city in itself. What if there is a ban on fresh construction here, and some offices are moved to some place, some fifteen kilometers away?
Are we justified in eating, thousands of acres of very fertile land, as in the case of Amaravathi? Mr Naidu is a brilliant administrator, but God only knows why he has done this. It has been widely reported that the damage to the natural environment is so huge. Why could he not have developed the city of Vijayawada itself?
Why not develop alternate cities? For example, Hosur is a hugely developed town, but it has developed only because it is right on the Karnataka border, with superb transport, linking it with Bangalore. Why not more towns like Hosur, so that Chennai stops going out of control?
Do metro rail services actually lead to lesser traffic jams? Do we have alternate development plans to save our cities? Members who know much more, based on their personal experiences, may attempt answers please.