PMPML mulls express bus service to reduce travel time

Jan 09, 2014, 09:54 IST |

PCMC and PMPML working together to introduce an express bus service from Bhakti Shakti Chowk to Kothrud, which will have minimal stops, and will reduce commute time by 30 minutes

In a bid to reduce travel time and ease commuter woes, the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) and the Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Limited (PMPML) officials are planning to start an express bus service for the city. The introduction of the bus service would be the first-of-it’s-kind in the city and will bring relief to passengers, as it would reduce travel time drastically.

New beginning: The central lane on the old Mumbai-Pune highway will be used for the express bus service. Pic/Navanath Kaple

PCMC plans to initially start the service from Bhakti Shakti Chowk to Kothrud -- a distance of 25 kilometres, wherein the bus currently takes an-hour-and-a-half to cover the distance and halts at 54 bus stops.

PCMC officials said once the express bus is pressed into service, the travel time would be reduced by half-an-hour, and the bus would halt at only 10 to 12 main bus stops along the route. Moreover, on the stretch between Bhakti Shakti Chowk to Dapodi (12-km), the bus will stop at only five bus stops – Nigadi, Pimpri, Nashik Phata, Kasarwadi and Dapodi. Ifall goes to plan, authorities plan to extend the express service from Bhakti Shakti Chowk to Hadapsar and Katraj.

Talking about the initiative, PCMC assistant traffic planner Bappu Gaikwad said, “We want to enhance the public transport service for our commuters, so we suggested to PMPML officials to start a bus service which will be fast, save time of commuters and have tickets priced at the existing fare. We are working together over this initiative and hope the commuters would give good response to it.”

PMPML chairman and managing director Ramchandra Joshi said, “It is a positive initiative and will benefit commuters. There is still some operational level concerns as we have to study the merge in and merge out points on the central lane road of the old Mumbai-Pune highway from where our buses will enter or exit the road. Also we are working on other issues related to the initiative and onlay after that we would start this special express bus service for the commuters.”

Welcoming this initiative Pimpri resident Hari Reddy, a daily commuter, said, “PMPML has taken a good step to introduce express bus service and if it is implemented properly, it’d be a success.”

Another commuter Sanjay Jadhav, resident of Nigadi and regular commuter, said, “I have to make my way to Shivajinagar andboard the PMPML bus daily. It takes around one hour via the old Mumbai-Pune highway during the morning peak hours. I hope this express bus service will reduce the travel time.”

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