Design Urban Transportation

Bumpy Rides: Redesigning Indian Transport

Darpana Sawant-Athale writes on transportation modes and the lack of ergonomics there in.

I slipped forward along with the seat, when the car braked. Then I adjusted myself, pushed the seat back in place and sat into an upright position, until the brakes were pressed again. By the end of the journey, I had a vague sense of my backbone and lower back becoming a single unit. The pain that followed left me with no sense of either in place.

Continue reading at Designology

Cities Infrastructure Master Plan Urban Transportation

Wadala Tower and Interstate Bus Terminal to be India’s Tallest Building.

Work on the Rs 4,000-crore, 531-mt tall iconic tower to come up at Wadala is slated to start in October. It will be the world’s seventh

tallest structure with a built-up area of 60,000 lakh sq ft, the largest among such buildings in the world.

The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) commissioner, Ratnakar Gaikwad, said permissions should be ready shortly for the project. "The building will generate Rs 2,000 crore in revenue through rent, which will go towards other development projects in the region,” said Gaikwad.

Infrastructure Urban Transportation

Bandra Worli Sea Link

Good friend and journalist Rahul Bhatia writes about the Bandra-Worli Sea Link in a recent weekly edition of the OPEN Magazine.

On the sea link that will soon connect Bandra to Worli, fifteen men swept, tarred, and patted a stretch no longer than five meters with uncommon urgency. Noxious tar, fresh off a machine that rolled forward, steamed beneath their feet. A vast expanse of concrete ready to be layered with tar loomed ahead, stretching out to a distant point. Spurred by a deadline already gone by, they pressed on without a break from their grueling work. Like them, other teams were at work in a hurry on the bridge. Above everyone, and everything, including the giant launch trusses that lift segments of the bridge into place for alignment, rose the main towers of the sea link, each made of four thick concrete legs that converged at a point 125 meters above the roadway. And behind them, higher than the towers, stood a crane. Ten years after it was commissioned, the bridge was yet to be finished.

Continue reading at Green Channel: Rahul’s blog

Urban Transportation

Can congestion pricing work for Mumbai ?

London’s congestion tax, a levy on private cars entering the central part of the city, could be scrapped altogether in the near future because it has failed to serve its purpose, according to deputy mayor of London, Richard Barnes. “People complained that earlier they used to be stuck in traffic jams. Now they complain they have to pay (congestion tax) and still remain stuck in jams,” Barnes told TOI recently. He added that a referendum in Manchester revealed that the majority was against it.

The controversial congestion tax which came into force five years ago has been keenly followed by transport experts here in Mumbai, with a section of planners wondering whether Mumbai too should implement something similar in its narrow southern end to decongest the roads.


Architects Architecture Urban Transportation

Charles Correa: Cities as agents of change

Charles Correa is arguably India’s most renowned architect and urban planner. From the Mahatma Gandhi Museum in Ahmedabad to the Brain and Cognitive Sciences Centre in Boston, his buildings have covered a wide spectrum. On the 50th anniversary of setting up his office in Mumbai, Rahul Singh spoke to Correa about his career and concerns:

Everybody who watched the Beijing Olympics was enthralled by the Bird’s Nest stadium. Why doesn’t India have such iconic buildings?

Chinese artist was the inspiration. Then, a Danish structural engineer, Ove Arup, who lives in England, did the actual interweaving structure (he also did the Sydney Opera House). For great buildings, you need a client with imagination, whose objective is excellence. In the 1960s and 1970s we had a lot of good buildings through government patronage of architects like Le Corbussier, Raj Rewal and Balkrishna Doshi. We need to find a way for public agencies to involve more private architects.

Tell us something about your career and your success.

I returned from the US when I was 25, became a partner in a firm. Then, at 28, I started on my own. I did not imagine I would last so long! I believe that if you enjoy what you do, you will do it well. After the Gandhi museum, I won a competition for low-cost housing. I was also invited to teach at MIT and the president of Peru, who was an architect, asked me to design some housing for them.

Infrastructure Urban Transportation

Railway expansion plan stuck in court

Central railway station is bursting at its seams. The number of trains and passengers far exceeds the capacity of the building and also the railway lines.

Southern Railway has finalised an over Rs 600-crore expansion plan to build a separate terminal on the west side of the Moore Market Complex (MMC) and to realign the railway tracks which would prevent cross-movement of upcountry and suburban trains.
But now the project is mired in a legal tangle as the Indian Institute of Architects (IIA) have dragged the railways to court over its plan to redevelop railway stations across the country. The architects’ grouse is that the project size is such that only foreign firms would be able to bid for it.


Infrastructure Real Estate Urban Transportation

No space for shops in most Bangalore Metro stations

By Zainab Bawa , 14 Aug 2008

It will not be a happy Independence Day for shopkeepers displaced by the Metro. The BMRCL has planned shop-less stations in key areas like Indiranagar, drowning the question of compensatory space for them.

The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL)’s plan for shopping space inside the to-be-built metro stations is likely to leave many displaced traders stranded. Except two stations, one on M G Road and the other at Byapanahalli, and possibly a third — the Trinity Circle station, all other stations will not have shops inside, according to K Nagendra, Public Relations Officer at BMRCL.

Nagendra says that Metro stations which will have provisions for parking lots and integrated transport facilities will be the ones earmarked for inclusion of shops. The other stations are going to be basic.


Continue reading entire article here.

Cities Environment and Climate Infrastructure Social Responsibility Urban Transportation

Mumbai Metro rail project to earn carbon credits

The Mumbai Metro Rail project has been in the news for decades. However it is only very recently that it became a real project and is being executed. When completed it will alleviate a lot of the pressure on the local train systems.

Interestingly it will also earn carbon credits.

BL reported that, after Delhi metro rail, it’s the turn of the Mumbai Metro rail project to earn carbon credits. The project will generate 651,938 carbon credits between 2011 and 2020. At the current market price of about INR 1,320, the credits will generate revenue of INR 86.05 crore.

Mumbai Metro One Private Limited, the special purpose vehicle for the project, has submitted a detailed methodology report to the executive board of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change seeking clean development mechanism registration for the project. [link]

Carbon credits are a key component of national and international emissions trading schemes that have been implemented to mitigate global warming. More about that on wikipedia.