‘Draft Regional Plan 2041’ of the national capital proposes commencement of ferry and cargo services on Yamuna river

The National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB) in its ‘Draft Regional Plan 2041’ proposes the commencement of ferry and cargo services on the river, Yamuna in Delhi by 2025 with an aim to promote inland waterways and create an alternate congestion-free transport facility in the city.

The proposed draft plan which is put in public domain on Thursday for suggestions objections also recommends decongesting all major entry points to the national capital from NCR towns.

Suggestions or objections on the same have been invited until January 7 and it will be notified by the board thereafter.

“Implementation of passenger and cargo ferry service on Inland National Waterway (NW)-110 (Yamuna River) should be expedited and made fully operational by preferably 2025. Possibilities of ferry service on the river Yamuna between Wazirabad and Sonia Vihar may be looked into if the project be implemented suitably,” the Draft Regional Plan 2041 said.

The draft also said there is a need to maintain minimum water levels in the rivers and canals of NCR to enable round-the-year boating, navigation and its potential for further use.

“Possibilities should be explored to develop passenger and bulk cargo (especially of non-perishables) ferry service on major canal networks in NCR like the Agra Canal, Upper Ganga Canal, Western Yamuna Canal, etc,” the draft plan said.

It further suggested the NCR states to come together and develop networks of greens and blues (waterways) in the region on the lines of Singapore and Shanghai.

States may identify water transport crossover points across the Yamuna river and develop road linkages to existing networks, the draft plan said.

Considering that 57 per cent of the total areas of the region will be urbanised by 2031 and 67 per cent by 2041, the draft emphasises on the need to create adequate peripheral roads to avoid congestion and reduce pollution in the region.

It recommends construction of two more regional expressways in addition to the Eastern and Western Peripheral expressways.

“Circular regional expressway connecting Panipat-Shamli-Meerut-Jewar-Nuh-Bhiwadi-Rewari-Jhajjar-Rohtak-Panipat and (another) Circular regional expressway connecting Karnal- MuzaffarnagarGarh MukteshwarNaraura AligarhMathuraDeegAlwarMahendragarhCharkhi Dadri-Bhiwani-Jind- Kaithal-Karnal should be developed for balanced development of NCR based facilities,” the draft plan said.

Putting special impetus on the development of bicycle and pedestrian facilities across NCR, the plan said, unhindered cycle riding infrastructure should be implemented by each NCR state as a part of a sustainable transport system focusing on cycle tracks and its continuity at intersections in all urban areas across NCR.

Moreover, the draft plan also highlights the need to develop Multimodal Integrated Transit Interchanges that covers rail, road, air and water transport modes.

“Potential station areas like Sarai Kale Khan and Anand Vihar with bus, rail and RRTS interchanges should be developed as major transport hubs and similar hubs be developed in all Metro and Regional Centres,” the draft plan said.

It stressed that the spatial spread of all new urban settlements should be decided based on having a “15-minute city (like Paris)” concept wherein all essential services and daily needs items are available within a 15-minute radius on foot, bike or non-motorised transport.

The draft plan to make the region congestion free, also emphasized on making multilevel parking complexes a mandatory requirement for city centres with high rise commercial complexes.

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