KATHMANDU: To manage the heavy traffic in the downtown area and to lessen the traffic congestion, the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division (MTPD) has come up with a plan, which is currently awaiting the nod of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

If everything goes as planned, Valley denizens will have pedestrian areas in the old city of Kathmandu, which will give a feel of spaciousness and a place to hang around, free from the hassles of honking vehicles, according to MTPD. Also in pipelines are improvement in the operation of public transport, traffic management plan for the inner city and, 4) Improvement of the air quality within the city, according to Binod Singh, Deputy Inspector General of Police, MTPD.

A meeting of the high-level officials of the MTPD, including DIG himself and team members of the Kathmandu Sustainable Urban Transport Project, headed by their team leader, David Irwin, was held on January 12, to discuss about the plan.

Singh told The Himalayan Times that they had approached the ADB with the special plan for the sustainable urban transport management.

"The plan is for the improvement of the Kathmandu Valley transport and reduction of traffic congestion," he said.

"The number of vehicles has increased ten-fold in the last one decade but the roads are of same size, leading to more congestions and disturbances on the road,” he said.

“The problem is compounded by the fact that the junctions are not well-managed and that the driving behavior is unregulated here,” he said.

"We hope the ADB will give the nod to the plan and other concerned authorities will be seriously involved in this novel plan," DIG Singh said.