Kathmandu, October 21
The government is planning to implement new scientific vehicle routes in Kathmandu Valley from mid-December.
Lawanya Kumar Dhakal, director general at the Department of Transport Management (DoTM), informed that the implementation of the new vehicle route system will help to ease the traffic in the Valley significantly. “As a result of haphazard issuance of vehicle route permits, traffic management in the Valley has become challenging. The new scientific vehicle route system will ease Valley’s traffic management,” said Dhakal.
Earlier, the government had conducted a study on vehicle routes in the Valley with assistance from the Asian Development Bank (ADB). DoTM will implement the new vehicle routes on the basis of recommendations of concerned study.
The study basically suggests distribution of vehicle route permits on the basis of availability of passengers on different routes, size of vehicles and road network. As per Dhakal, a committee has been formed to analyse the study of ADB and implement the new scientific vehicle route system in the Valley from mid-December. “The committee will make a few changes if necessary in the study and submit its report. DoTM will implement the new vehicle route system on the basis of the same report,” he informed.
The study report prepared by ADB has basically categorised road networks in the Valley into three types — primary, secondary and tertiary — and suggested issuance of vehicle route permits to comparatively larger vehicles in primary routes and to other small vehicles in secondary and tertiary routes.
The study has identified eight primary vehicle routes, 16 secondary routes and 42 tertiary routes in the Kathmandu Valley. As per the study, larger vehicles with seat capacity of 80 passengers can ply on primary routes while vehicles with seat capacity of 60 passengers can run on secondary routes. Primary routes basically connect Valley’s Ring Road.
Currently, there are more than 300 vehicle routes for smaller and larger public vehicles in the Valley. However, the new scientific vehicle route system will have only 66 routes for vehicles in the Valley.
In the past, the government had been issuing vehicle route permits as per demand of transport entrepreneurs. However, this trend has stopped after the government started curbing syndicate system in the transportation industry.
“DoTM will now issue vehicle route permit on the basis of passenger demand and available road network,” informed Dhakal.
A version of this article appears in print on October 22, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.