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Post-mortem on demise of Delhi’s BRT

All ill-planned bus-rapid transit network in Delhi aggravated motorists by increasing traffic and delays. (Ramesh NG/Flickr/cc)

Delhi seems like a perfect candidate for bus-rapid transit, or BRT. The city is spread out, with many areas only accessible by car, and the metro is crowded and limited in reach. Atul Mathur writes for The Hindu that despite its potential, BRT failed in Delhi and was dismantled. The municipal government voted this summer to scrap it.

Dario Hidalgo, director of integrated transport for Embarq, part of the World Resources Institute, tells the publication that the project lacked some key elements. For example, there was no central coordination of the fleet and enclosed bus shelters were never added. The bus routes also were considered too short to make much difference.

A key complaint was that the buses worsened traffic, prompting long delays for motorists. Embarq was among several parties that urged the city in 2009 to retain and improve the system, particularly management of intersections. Hidalgo notes that Ahmedabad, Surat, Indore and Bhopal have proven that Indian cities can successfully operate BRT.

The Hindu

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