The first proposed smart city of Himachal Pradesh – Dharamshala – is all set to have a 12km passenger unibus skyway system covering Dharamshala and McLeodganj as the existing roads connecting two towns have been congested.
With the ever increasing number of vehicles, there is no scope of widening the roads. To execute this ambitious project, a company from Belarus has been engaged which for last two days is conducting the preliminary study to find the possibility.
Dharamshala besides being the headquarter of Tibetan government-in-exile is also home to the Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama due to which it is frequented by large number of foreign tourists and Hollywood actors. Construction of cricket stadium has also brought the town on international map.
The suburbs of Dharamshala include McLeodganj, Bhagsunath, Dharamkot, Naddi, Forsyth Ganj, Kotwali Bazaar, Kacheri Adda, Dari, Ramnagar, Sidhpur, and Sidhbari. Over the years, Dharamshala is facing traffic congestion and parking problem.
Seeing heavy rush of vehicles causing congestion on the roads and resulting into frequent traffic jams, Dharamshala municipal corporation has come out with the proposal to have a skyway project for the hill-town.
In a state where frequent road accidents kill over 1,000 people each year, proposed system is being seen as a safe mode of transportation for residents. Innovative suspended wheeled vehicles would operate above the ground on the innovative rail and string elevated structure, sources said. They said that location of track structure above the ground enhances safety of movement by about 100 times while anti-derailment system increases traffic safety by another 10 times.
Himachal Pradesh urban development minister Sudhir Sharma, who is also MLA from Dharamshala, said skyway is considered as the most cost-effective, environment friendly and safest of all known advanced transport systems. He said that survey of Dharamshala and McLeodganj would be conducted by the company after which a report would be prepared after which cost of the project would be worked out. “We are expecting that report would be prepared by February after which work would be started on the first skyway project of Himachal Pradesh,” he added.