New Delhi: Delhi Development Authority on Monday approved cycle-sharing policy for the national capital to promote use of bicycles for last-mile connectivity and reduce pollution and vehicular congestion in the city.
Cycle-sharing scheme, popular in European countries, allows sharing of a bicycle between multiple users. Unlike 'rent-a-cycle' scheme, where the hired cycle has to be returned by the first user only, the sharing system allows the same cycle to be used and returned by multiple users.
Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung, in his capacity as the Chairman of the Delhi Development Authority, gave the approval during the 51st meeting of the Governing Body of Unified Traffic Transportation Infrastructure Planning and Engineering Centre (UTTIPEC), DDA's urban planning arm.
"Today, even for 1-2 kms we are forced to use motorbikes or cars and this adds to the pollution and congestion in the streets and therefore promotion of cycling and pedestrian infrastructure is vital to reduce pollution as well as congestion," Jung said.
The sharing system is set to have a mobility card (smart card) that the users will be able to use in the Metro or the DTC cluster buses, and also in shops for any other transactions, the DDA said.
The card shall be linked to individual's identity and the use of bicycles shall be monitored by an operation control centre.
DDA will implement the policy in coordination with other urban local bodies (ULB).
"As per the decision, land-owning agencies like PWD, DDA, municipal corporations etc will provide NMT (non-motorised transport) lanes and related infrastructure. The safety and mobility of cyclists and pedestrians will also be ensured so that the city moves towards having safe cycling infrastructure in the streets and at intersections," the DDA said.
The housing authority said, "It was decided that all stakeholder should come forward and help by giving space for cycle stations or providing advertisements revenue rights or space for operations control centre, depots, workshops, among others."
The policy is to incentives participation by private sector in promoting cycle sharing and cycle renting in the city, it said.
DDA had proposed a cycle sharing project in Dwarka, as part of its initiatives to improve the quality of life in the city through eco-friendly measures.
The urban body had in April held consultations with six operators from across the country and discussed technology issues along with other details related for operationalisation of the cycle sharing project in Dwarka sub city, which was built by the DDA.
In the meeting, a presentation on the 'Dwarka Cycle Sharing System' was made by the Centre for Green Mobility (CGM), a non-profit organisation partnering with DDA in preparation of the plan and providing technical assistance.
The cycle sharing system in Dwarka, on the lines of the policy will enable implementation of 100 kms of shaded cycle tracks and pedestrian walkways along with 180 cycle stations spread over 30 sqkm of area, in a network that will have 2,500 cycles.
DDA Vice Chairman, Balvinder Kumar, said, "DDA shall run the system for the first three years without expectation of a lot of revenue.
"This project shall be used as a way to improve the existing road infrastructure of Dwarka including betterment of footpaths, cycle tracks shading road side amenities and other public services".
The cycle sharing stations in Dwarka shall be placed close to each other so that they are accessible. The cycle stations at Delhi Metro and other important locations will be larger, keeping over 40 cycles.
DDA shall hire consultants to design the stations and shall bring out procurement and operations tender for equipment and operators through a transparent process.
According to the policy, the vendors will have to adhere to 'Service Performance Standards' setup by the UTTIPEC. The performance standards shall ensure a high-level of service so that people find it easy to use the system and shall have minimal waiting time at such stations, it added.