How will new parking policy change this?: Only 92 parking lots for 20 lakh vehicles
BMC officials acknowledge that with the corporation having jurisdiction over a specific area, it is difficult to create more parking spaces
There has been no lack of hype pertaining to the city’s new parking policy, and citizens have been promised ample space for their vehicles. But, a cursory glance at the scheme of things would reveal that Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has its task cut out. Currently, only 92 parking lots are available with the civic body, where it has to accommodate over 20 lakh vehicles, which is an impracticable challenge.
There have also been suggestions of having the parking lots marked in the Development Plan of 2014, so there is no confusion in future for BMC, and the areas are allotted for the intended purpose. The corporation has ample thinking to do, as 92 parking lots certainly won’t be enough, and developing multi-storied parking structures would require time.
There was a lot of speculation and opposition before the implementation of the new parking policy, but with it now in place, identifying parking spots has become tricky for officials, as parking under flyovers has been disallowed. BMC’s improvements committee that deals with civic policy, cleared the pay and park plan last Thursday. According to the policy, four-wheelers have to pay Rs 60 per hour, which is a threefold hike. BMC officials, however, said that there is no exemption in parking charges, except for red, amber and blue (ambulance) beacon vehicles.
It has been envisaged in the policy that the new rates would help discourage vehicular traffic on roads, especially in south Mumbai. BMC has divided parking lots in three categories, based on business, the average revenue it generates from a particular slot, and timing of parking. The busiest slots have been put in ‘A’ category, while the lesser and least busy ones are in ‘B’ and ‘C’ categories.
“With the corporation having jurisdiction over a specific limit and no chances of extending that, it is difficult to have more parking spaces. BMC should demarcate parking lots in the Development Plan, which will help identify these spots when the pay and park policy is implemented,” said leader of the house Yashodhar Phanse. Additional BMC commissioner SVR Srinivas, in-charge of BMC’s traffic department, said, “There are currently 92 parking lots in the city. We are looking to create more.”
Category A: Most populated commercial complexes, important government and private offices, areas that witness maximum footfalls
Category B: Areas with general commercial areas and office premises
Category C: Smaller commercial areas that have lesser known usage of vehicles