Srinagar Development Authority (SDA) has proposed a Metro network for greater Srinagar to overcome mounting traffic congestion in the city. The proposed metro lines span from Gallandar on the South up to Narbal Chowk on the North and from Nowgam Railway Station up to Ganderbal on Northeast.
This information was given at a high-level meeting held on Monday, under the chairmanship of Minister for Urban Development & Urban Local Bodies, Nawang Rigzin Jora to review the progress of Srinagar Master Plan.
The meeting was informed that the scarcity of quality and planned road networks and lack of organized parking facilities in the Srinagar city, leads to high degrees of traffic congestion that is going to aggravate further in the coming time. To overcome the traffic and transportation problems in the city, SDA has, in the new Master Plan, proposed a network of light metro and mini metro besides suggesting a network of new roads, flyovers, grade-separators and subways for Srinagar.
The meeting was informed that out of the two proposed Metro lines, the one originating from Gallandar, the take-off point of the new expressway, after passing through Pampore, Sumarbugh, Panthachowk, Sonawar, Dalgate, Lal Chowk, Jehangir Chowk, Batamaloo, Bemina, JVC, Parimpora, Zainakote, Lawaypora, culminate at Narbal Crossing.
The second Metro line would originate at Nowgam Railway Station and after moving over to Bagh-e-Mehtab would pass through Chanapora, Natipora, Rambagh, Mehjoor Nagar, Jawahar Nagar, LD Hospital, Jehangir Chowk, Barbarshah, Baba Demb, Khanyar, Nowhatta, Hawal, Alamgari Bazaar, Bagh-e-Ali Mardan Khan, Nowshehra, SKIMS, Soura-Buchpora, Pandach to culminate at Ganderbal.
Jehangir Chowk would form the junction of the two Metro lines which would provide reliable connectivity to the core area of the city.
The meeting was informed that besides delineating a transportation plan, the Srinagar Master Plan has earmarked dedicated hubs for various specialized activities including education, information technology, industry, agro activities, tourism, handicrafts and health care.
The meeting was informed that for the first time the Srinagar Master Plan would include the Zonal Plans, wherein the land use plan would be enumerated at the micro-level.
The meeting was informed that before being put in the public domain, Chief Minister Mr Omar Abdullah would take a thorough review of the draft Master Plan. Pertinently, the Technical Committee has already put forth its suggestions on the Master Plan which already stand incorporated in the draft Land Use Plan.
The midterm review of the Srinagar Master Plan 2000-2021 was undertaken by SDA in February 2012 to suggest ways and means to make the document more realistic and implementable in consonance with the ground realities besides taking care of inaccuracies in the existing Mater Plan.
Pertinently, SDA Board in a landmark decision last month approved extension of Greater Srinagar local area from the existing 417 kms to 757 kms.
SDA has proposed extension of the existing City limits towards South, West and Northern directions along the new motorway coming up from Gallandar via Narbal upto Ganderbal. In the extended Greater Srinagar local area, 410 sq kms will fall under SDA limits against existing 160 kms, 240 sq kms under Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) limits, 50 kms under Ganderbal, 35 kms under Budgam, 9 kms under Pampore, 7.5 kms under Khrew and 5.2 kms under Cantonment area.
As per the new Master Plan, the boundaries of Greater Srinagar would encompass Dara-Fakri and Dachigam National Park on Northeast, Zabarwan hills from Khunmoh towards Khrew on the East, Kakapora Railway Station on Southeast, Budgam local area upto Gallandar on South, Mazhama Railway station & road towards Gulmarg on the Southwest and Buran, Ganepur in Pattan towards the West.
Commissioner Secretary Housing & Urban Development Department, Jeet Lal Gupta, Vice-Chairman SDA, Mohammad Shafi Rather, Vice-Chairman LAWDA, Irfan Yasin, Chief Engineer R&B Kashmir, M A Lone, Chief Architect J&K, V C Pant, Joint Commissioner Planning SMC, Mushtaq Ahmad and other officers from concerned departments and agencies were present at the meeting.