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Old 22nd September 2015, 11:26   #46
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

My apologies in advance if this sounds a bit offensive...

But somebody needs to stop this importing "Western-mindset claptrap" in this country. Starting off with BRTS (which proved to be failure of epic proportions in Delhi, and is now being got rid off!), Raahgiri (which was adopted from Bogota, of all places!), and now this "bless their souls" car-free day...

If instead of wasting their energy on things like this, NGOs, and police can try educating, and enforcing driver discipline, roads would be much better. Authorities instead of barricading roads and designating one-day parking areas, should try covering potholes on road, could really be of much better help!

In words of Raghuram Rajan, we need to get rid of this "jugaad" culture!
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Old 22nd September 2015, 11:28   #47
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

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Originally Posted by cowboy45 View Post
It annoys me how many voters expect solutions to problems without any tax.
..........

The charge raises the money required to provide the infrastructure.
No dear, you got it wrong. Noone is saying that we should not pay tax. But then ,how much tax should be payed? Believe me, money is not the problem. Its the will of the government to find a long term solution. Already enough taxes are being collected (and dont forget surcharge & cess on top of that). Evey year more than a lakh cars are registered in Delhi & NCR. Imagine the road tax collected (on top of other duties already levied - like VAT). The govt. is simply trying out easy ways, rather than attack the crux of the problem - which, IMHO, is population explosion(causing unprecedented urban migration) and corruption(which ensures money collected does not find its way towards improve public infrastructure).

If you really believe that one more congestion tax can be a permanent solution (or atleast a part of it), then please elaborate further. Maybe I am missing the forest for the trees
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Old 22nd September 2015, 11:30   #48
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

Today's car free day is not really "CAR FREE", but a good start nonetheless.

Earlier I was using my car for daily commute to office but now travel by Delhi metro and Rapid metro, though my travel time is 15 minutes in total. One slight
niggle is the 1 km distance from my home to HUDA metro station, but then you can't have it all.

Travelling by metro doesn't really make a big difference money wise but the time saved is worth it.

As glimpse of Gurgaon traffic.(courtesy TOI)
Attached Thumbnails
Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015-img_20150908_090239.jpg  

Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015-img_20150908_090212.jpg  

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Old 22nd September 2015, 12:27   #49
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

If your city gets into such car-free concept, and your organization does not provide you parking spot for your car for such days, what will you do?
Will you, as BHPian go ahead anyway and take the car to office, but somehow come up with creative ideas to find a different parking spot?
Or will you come up with creative ideas of finding the right mode of transport, which will avoid car for one day, helping the purpose?

We, our culture, have been trained to avoid pain at all cost, that is why, most of the car users, who come to office from far away places do not like to try anything else.
Many of us might be living in apartments / villas, constructed in newly developed areas, which may not have the public transport close home.
But if we are ready to walk for a km or two, and wait for 10-15 minutes, is it that difficult to find transport? Is it possible for us to try this once in a while, and get ourselves familiarized to local transport, so that when such ideas are implemented in our cities, we happily subscribe to them?

Of course - the initiative by the Government can only be seen as a training exercise in my opinion. Or else, what is the benefit for us, if we leave our cars at our homes, and toil in sun and crowded buses? When we come back next day with our cars, we would end up facing the same previous traffic. The traffic free roads created by us the previous day, would have been enjoyed by some commercial vehicles, which run on road all the time without any such ideas forced on them.
The initiative will be successful, when we have truly something in it for us. If we face difficulty in walking hot sun, sweating, one day, we should enjoy, traffic-free car driving the next day. Here is where ideas like Odd/Even numbered cars can help.
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Old 22nd September 2015, 12:43   #50
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

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Originally Posted by hybridpetrol View Post
If y----snip----------can help.
Do visit GGN for a couple of days.
In fact, had they tried this in the heart of Delhi, maybe in CP, or west delhi, we'd have been in a better position to gauge the feasibility of this. In fact, I am sure it'd have been VERY successful.
In this case, howver, there is a GENUINE threat to life, limb and health.
And it not a matter of "inconvenience" to find and try ingenuous methods. There aren't any.
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Old 22nd September 2015, 12:44   #51
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

Here's how the formula of development work in this country:

1. Find a place that has potential
2. Sell it off to the big corporates and developers like ABCDLF
3. The corporate will sell it again (and again) to the aam janta for 100% of the profit
4. As the potential grows commercially exploit and make use of every inch making every paisa possible
5. When the place screws up like hell then take desperate measures (to show off you're acting) like no car Tuesday's, no walk Thursday's, no mule Saturdays etc.
6. Think of developing more infrastructure and expansion
7. Go to Step 1

I've been visiting Gurgaon since the early 90's and they've turned the quaint little town that had row houses and greenery to a polluted mess. Why is that the place (think of any town) they say they're developing ends up in a mess?

I've just driven through the No Car area (City Centre to Subhash Chowk) and there's no/negligible change in traffic. The road side parking has been blocked (which should not be allowed anyway) though.

If the government really wants to improve the area then they should stop selling more land for properties, houses, offices etc. and focus on setting the infrastructure (roads, public transport) right.
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Old 22nd September 2015, 18:33   #52
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

First hand experience of car free Tuesday: I have been doing the rounds to Gurgaon for the past several years and travel in peak hours. As a good samaritan, I've been doing my bit by car pooling with 3 other folks and this has been ongoing for the last 2 years, this being the third year and counting. It seemed that all of NCR was on the road heading from Dwarka to Gurgaon. The commute on a typical day which starts at 9:00 AM at my residence ends at 10:40 AM by the time I reach office in DLF Cyber City. The total travel time on average is 1 hour and 40 minutes and suprise, surprise, it took me the same time today as well. As someone else on the forum rightly mentioned, this was JUST another tick in the box exercise. On the entire route, I did not even see a single person on a bicycle or groups of people walking to their offices.
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Old 22nd September 2015, 19:05   #53
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

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As someone else on the forum rightly mentioned, this was JUST another tick in the box exercise. On the entire route, I did not even see a single person on a bicycle or groups of people walking to their offices.
We agree that, if there are no cars on road, roads will be free from traffic. Quite simple.

If we have to subscribe to such ideas, there should be "something in it" for us
- Such as, after taking alternative transport for one day, we should be rewarded with traffic free roads to drive our cars some another day. If no such benefit why would we agree to this?
I ask the same question with our common mindset: If I leave my car at home, someone else drives comfortably on free roads. Similarly, when I take my car, someone else should leave their car at their home, and let me drive comfortably on free roads.

We love to drive on free roads - more than, we taking bus and letting others drive on free roads. So, today, all of Gurgaon would have brought their cars to drive on the free roads, leading to usual or more traffic!

Some companies in Bangalore let their employees Work from Home for one or more days in a week, without asking any reasons. Ideas such as this, actually results in reduced car traffic on roads!
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Old 23rd September 2015, 11:38   #54
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

I am quite surprised by such negative reactions to the initiative. I thought everybody will support is since as rightly told, we are not stuck in traffic, but we are traffic.

This initiative will surely have an imapct on those people who can change like me:
- I take bike to the office (8 kms)
- My wife also started taking cycle from past two weeks to office 2-3 times a week (3 kms).

I have more examples to give, like my company is fully supporting the initiative and is implying on starting more bus routes for the company transport in Gurgaon. This initiative may also encourage other companies to follow suit.

There will obviously be some discomfort, esp in the beginning and I also agree not everybody can follow the rule, but saying that this initiative should not be started and will not work at all is naive.

Regarding public transport and roads, of course there is a scope of lots of improvement, but this idea will surely educate lots of those who always thought that travelling by anything but car is not possible in Gurgaon. Couple of my friends in Sec-14 were positively surprised by the options of public transport and ease to travel to Cyber city.

Issue is there are lots of people who without even considering the other options are blaming the infrastructure.

Cheers
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Old 23rd September 2015, 12:32   #55
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

My place of work is in Cyber City. I left half an hour earlier in the morning yesterday (at 8). I was thinking I may ditch my car at a metro station and Rapid Metro it depending on what the scene looks like.
Yesterday was no different from a regular day in terms of traffic etc. DLF parking was very much operational. Ultimately saw so many cars on the road, I just drove down to work. I believe the only difference was they were not allowing people to halt or park by the road or in the smaller parking lots around Cyber City.
Good initiative, wish people would participate. It was far from car free! Still have some time to go before we can manage without cars here in Gurgaon.
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Old 23rd September 2015, 14:37   #56
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I work in Cybercity as well and am lucky enough to have a parking place under our office. I did not notice any fewer cars on the road. Remarkably, this morning in the Times of India a very positive story on this car free day on the front page. But in the daily supplement Delhi Times it is called a failure. Go figure.
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Old 23rd September 2015, 16:50   #57
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

Gurgaon is horrible to travel in - or almost getting to that level of chaos. But no-car-day is a stupid thing.

1. There is virtually no public transport on last mile (read few kms at least) for most parts. I will not get my brains screwed by auto guys at the beginning and end of day - assuming I find one.
2. There is a genuine risk to life. The way people drive their burly SUVs (esp ladies riding the innovas and scorpios and XUVs - sorry ladies but this is true) or people from local village hurtling down at high speeds with little knowledge or regard for road and road rules, riding a cycle to office is out
3. Most people need to travel long distances. Prime pockets from where rich people can bike down or walk to office are way way way beyond reach of an average joe and people travel more than 15/20 kms generally to get to office
4. Due to the broken infra and undeveloped areas, people fight too many battles already and cannot stomach another one. Google for stagnating and stench-filled areas around new town heights etc.

Better solutions:
1. Allow odd num car on one day and even num cars on other
2. Force people to car pool - giving them priority passage or dedicated lanes etc. (being tried already, maybe)
3. Promote WFH with corporates
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Old 23rd September 2015, 17:52   #58
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

Quote:
Originally Posted by 5kmiles View Post
Gurgaon is horrible to travel in - or almost getting to that level of chaos. But no-car-day is a stupid thing.
Car-free day is not a stupid thing, it will actually create a trouble free ride on bicycles / buses etc. The idea is that most office goers have cars, and they create traffic, through sheer number of vehicles. It will be a realization, if all of them take other modes of transport making roads free.
Quote:
1. There is virtually no public transport on last mile (read few kms at least) for most parts. I will not get my brains screwed by auto guys at the beginning and end of day - assuming I find one.
Not in all cases. But even then, it is actually healthy if the last mile can be considered as a walking opportunity! (If it is not too much of distance)
Quote:
2. There is a genuine risk to life. The way people drive their burly SUVs (esp ladies riding the innovas and scorpios and XUVs - sorry ladies but this is true) or people from local village hurtling down at high speeds with little knowledge or regard for road and road rules, riding a cycle to office is out
You mean, there are maniac and drivers without knowledge driving on roads, causing this risk to life, right? I think there is equal amount of risk involved, while driving the car as well, due to the same maniac drivers.
Quote:
3. Most people need to travel long distances. Prime pockets from where rich people can bike down or walk to office are way way way beyond reach of an average joe and people travel more than 15/20 kms generally to get to office
True, this is a real concern. Newly developed areas may not have public transport or office transport options anywhere closeby. In such cases taking our own car is the only option.
Quote:
4. Due to the broken infra and undeveloped areas, people fight too many battles already and cannot stomach another one. Google for stagnating and stench-filled areas around new town heights etc.
What about the people who ride two-wheelers, and those who already travel by public transport? While they can already handle such problems, can't we handle it?

Quote:
Better solutions:
1. Allow odd num car on one day and even num cars on other
2. Force people to car pool - giving them priority passage or dedicated lanes etc. (being tried already, maybe)
3. Promote WFH with corporates
1 - Agreed, but still our people will come up with ingenious ways to use friend's car, their own second car etc, just to match the number which can be driven that day!
2 - Car pool is a failed concept, due to our entirely different time schedules. We are also averse to travel with strangers, due to the crime rate. It cannot be forced, in such state of law and order.
3 -
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Old 23rd September 2015, 22:09   #59
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

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Originally Posted by anupamjain2k View Post
My apologies in advance if this sounds a bit offensive...

But somebody needs to stop this importing "Western-mindset claptrap" in this country. Starting off with BRTS (which proved to be failure of epic proportions in Delhi, and is now being got rid off!), Raahgiri (which was adopted from Bogota, of all places!), and now this "bless their souls" car-free day...

If instead of wasting their energy on things like this, NGOs, and police can try educating, and enforcing driver discipline, roads would be much better. Authorities instead of barricading roads and designating one-day parking areas, should try covering potholes on road, could really be of much better help!

In words of Raghuram Rajan, we need to get rid of this "jugaad" culture!
You completely missed the point. One has to start somewhere. This was an imperfect start but a start nevertheless. FYI - BRTS was a pain for car owners - but I'm sure it was worthwhile for the "aam aadmi" that is far more in number and which travels by bus. Its working successfully in cities where it was done right - Ahmedabad (so I've heard).

The one malaise Gurgaon has really imported is our car addiction coupled with absent quality last-mile connectivity (like America). Call it a western claptrap but we need more buses on all possible routes just like it happens in European cities, e.g Germany. I'm afraid Gurgaon peak hour traffic has gone beyond the level where just discipline will work - discipline now is only a stopgap arrangement. The only long term solution is much more high quality public transport.



As an aside, Here's a blog on the subject by a friend with some dated information, but whose an excellent thinker nevertheless:
http://noenthuda.com/blog/2015/09/23...ocial-capital/


While most news nowadays is fairly hilarious, one piece was more hilarious than the others. This was about traffic jams in Gurgaon yesterday, a day that had been declared as a “Car Free Day”.

You might wonder why there might be traffic jams on days that are supposedly “Car Free”. I don’t know the precise effect this can be classified under, but it’s somewhere in a linear combination of Prisoner’s Dilemma and Tragedy of the Commons and correlation, all led by a lack of social capital.

There are no rules that declare the day to be car free. It’s just a “request” by the local government (traffic police in this case). While there were some nominal efforts to improve public transport for the day, etc, there was nothing else that was different yesterday from other days. So why did it lead to a traffic jam?

If you know it’s a car free day and you have a car, you’ll assume that other people are going to leave their cars at home, and that you are going to have a free ride in free-flowing non-traffic if you take out your car. And so you take out your car. Unfortunately, the number of people who think such is enough to cause a traffic jam.

The problem stems with a lack of social capital in Indian cities (based on anecdotal experience (my own data point from 2008-09), I would posit it is lower in Gurgaon than in other Indian cities). As a consequence, when people are trying to make the “great optimisation”, they allocate a greater weight than necessary to their own interests, and consequently a lesser than necessary weight to others’ interests. And thus you end up with outcomes like yesterday’s. More generally, “requests” to people to give up a private benefit for others’ benefits can at best turn out to be counterproductive.

While designing policies, it’s important to be realistic and keep in mind ease of implementation. So if the reality is low social capital, any policy that requires voluntary giving up by people is only going to have a marginal impact.

Coming back to traffic, I’m increasingly convinced (I’ve held this conviction since 2006, and it has only grown stronger over time) that the only way to make people switch to public transport is to lead with supply – flood the streets with buses, which among other things actually increase the cost of private transport. Once there is sufficient density of buses, these buses can be given their own lanes which further pushes up the cost of driving. Then we can look at further measures such as prohibitive parking costs and congestion pricing.

We can have these notional “no car days” and “bus days” and “no honking days” but it is unlikely that any of them will have anything more than a token effect.

Last edited by phamilyman : 23rd September 2015 at 22:14.
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Old 23rd September 2015, 23:04   #60
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Default Re: Gurgaon gets ready for Car-Free Tuesdays from 22nd September, 2015

I'm surprised if people are surprised of the negative reactions. Its attempts to seriously infringe citizens rights by coercion through some sort of social pressure.

For the N'th time, if they just move from lifetime road tax system to congestion charge system all over the country's metro cities, it'll solve the problem. (Refund the road tax as transferable credit to current car owners).

One time Road-tax that we pay is probably being gobbled up by politicians, & that as far as I understand, is the only reason they aren't shifting to the "Congestion Charges" system.

If required, even presently the state governments can even levy a small fee as congestion charges (to genuinely & seriously encourage car-pooling), citing the extra force they need to employ to manage the traffic. (But then there'll be hue & cry among the people demanding accountability - I guess thats why it isn't adopted)

Edit :
IMHO By masking it as a "Public Initiative", they're just turning us against each other & shifting the focus away from the authorities' apathy from trying to understand the seriousness of the issue.

P.S. : Just my 2 cents.

Last edited by GrammarNazi : 23rd September 2015 at 23:19.
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