‘Bicycle only’ zones to come up in Hyderabad, Warangal and Karimnagar

Hyderabad: In a bid to encourage people to use bicycles for their daily commute in order to reduce pollution in Telangana, ’bicycle-only zones’ will be formed in parts of Hyderabad, Karimnagar, and Warangal cities by the state government. Under the new initiative, a 46-kilometer area (23 km on both sides), covering 7 cycle tracks have been identified for the purpose, of which initially a 10-Km will be considered for implementation.

Based on feedback and implementation challenges, other cycle tracks will be implemented accordingly in the state, said the government in a release on Friday. As part of the new initiative, necessary signage’s, road markings, temporary barricading and plug-and-play bollards will be set-up for cyclists. Moreover, available spaces at Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited (HMRL) stations, Telangana Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC ) terminals /depots and Multi Model Transport System stations (MMTS) will be used for locating Public Bicycle Sharing (PBS) Docks for the purpose of first and last mile connectivity.

The state government launched the new service under the “India Cycle4Change Challenge” (C4C Challenge), a Government of India (GoI) initiative under the Smart Cities Mission. Hyderabad, Warangal and Karimnagar are the three cities registered for the challenge, including which they are around 95 cities from across the country.

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 Additionally, for implementing the Challenge in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) Jurisdiction, the Hyderabad Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority (HUMTA) and Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) are providing all technical advice and guidance, added the release, which also added that as of now plans are underway for infrastructure to be developed in the Khairatabad region (Central Zone).

It has also been proposed that cycle lanes would be made in a phased manner for 450 kms, covering Cyberabad / HI-TEC City, Kukatpally, Dilsukhnagar, Charminar, Mehdipatnam, Financial district, Hyderabad Knowledge centre and Kokapet areas. Experts believe that in the post Covid – 19 scenario, short distances are better covered by providing safe cycle lanes in cities like Hyderabad, Karimnagar and Warangal cities.

The first phase of the challenge is under way which includes planning of cycle tracks on pilot basis, taking feedback and creating awareness in the public. This phase would end by October 14, 2020.  Later, based on the Pilot project intervention / Implementation, concept plans and scale up strategies submitted by 95 cities, the Government of India will shortlist 11 cities for taking forward to stage – 2 by 28th October, 2020.

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