NAGPUR (Metro Rail News): In order to increase ridership, MahaMetro has approached Nagpur Municipal Corporation’s transport department and urged it to carry out route rationalization for buses which are plying on Wardha Road. In a letter to transport manager, the MahaMetro stated that if the NMC carries out route rationalization, it would benefit the commuters and also increase ridership in public transport facility provided by Aapli Bus and Metro as well.
At present, as many as 24 buses are being operated on Wardha Road from Sitabuldi to Butibori with a ridership of around 8,680 every day. MahaMetro operates one Metro rail every hour from Sitabuldi interchange to Khapri having five stations (Sitabuldi interchange, Airport, Airport South, New Airport and Khapri).
Though MahaMetro started commercial operations from March 9, it has increased frequency from June 28. On average, around 2,500 passengers commute daily on this existing route in 25 trips. The frequency will further increase after getting additional Metro rakes, which are already under trial. NMC’s transport committee chairman Bunty Kukde said the NMC is yet to take any decision on the Metro’s proposal.
He, however, clarified the civic body will not reduce the number of Aapli Buses on this route. The NMC earns Rs24.73 per km per bus on this route. Kukde though said the NMC will definitely provide feeder buses on Metro routes. Along with this proposal, the MahaMetro has also pointed out that commuters who want to take Metro from the existing bus stop on Maharajbagh Road are facing the problem of crossing busy junctions like Variety Square and Rani Jhansi Square, which are unsafe for pedestrian movement due to heavy traffic.
The distance from the existing bus stop on Maharajbagh Road to Sitabuldi interchange Metro station is 635 meters. It has further requested the civic body to start feeder bus service from Maharajbagh Road to its interchange station. MahaMetro has urged that routes of city buses coming to Sitabuldi from Katol Road, Gandhibagh, Hudkeshwar, Dighori, Besa, Bahadur Phata, Defence, Jaitala, Swavlambi Nagar be diverted towards Sitabuldi interchange Metro station for giving connectivity to commuters so as to increase ridership of NMC buses and Metro also.
As per its proposal, routes may be diverted via Variety Square, Munje Square, Mor Bhavan, and Maharajbagh. Buses going from Sitabuldi towards Katol Road, Koradi Road, Gandhibagh, Hudkeshwar, Dighori, Besa, Bahadur Phata, Defence, Jaitala, Swavlambi Nagar will also be diverted vice versa.
The MahaMetro has also requested allowing two-way movement of Aapli Buses from Variety Square to Munje Square, Anand Talkies to Munje Square and from Munje Square to Rani Jhansi Square, which is planned to be one-way for all vehicles aimed at better traffic management.