With traffic jams for Shillongites being the biggest source of frustration, the global consulting firm, Dalberg has made ten key suggestions for improving mobility systems in the State capital.
The suggestions include introducing high-frequency people-friendly public buses, building of ring roads so as to divert traffic from National Highways, introducing of cable cars as an alternative to road-based mobility, creating walkable culture corridors connecting places of tourist attraction to encourage walking, providing smart streetlights in municipal areas, introducing non-fuss school buses, establishing next door markets to decentralize daily need markets, reducing in-street parking by curbing illegal parking in municipal areas, introducing a car cap policy to reverse trends in car ownership and creating a self-sufficient New Shillong Township.
The study conducted by Dalberg focused on the needs of the citizens, sustainability and unlocking economic growth and with this vision in mind the key suggestions were made.
A one-day workshop to study the recommendations to decongest Shillong was held here today to deliberate and prepare an action plan on recommendations made on this subject.
The study was conducted by the Meghalaya Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation (MIDFC) and the project management unit of the Meghalaya Integrated Transport Project (MITP), which is a World Bank-funded initiative. The study was entrusted to Dalberg.
Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong who attended the workshop, expressed the hope that the recommendations made will help in decongesting Shillong.
He repeated an oft-talked about idea – that of the introduction of cable cars, describing it as highly favourable. In the short term, however, the Deputy CM reiterated the need to improve and increase public and school bus services.
D Vijay Kumar, Project Director of the MITP and CEO of the MIDFC stated that the problem of improving urban mobility was a complex, multi-sector problem that involves many stakeholders. Stating that though Shillong has the potential to become a world class city and one of the best hill stations in the country, if the mobility problem remains unsolved this potential will not be realized, he added.
The workshop saw the participation of officers from different government departments, community leaders, representatives of educational institutions, hoteliers, and Dorbar Shnongs.