Pune’s First Blackspot Redesign At Khadi Machine Chowk And Undri Chowk Which Saw 100 Accidents In 3 Years
To save lives on Pune’s roads, SaveLIFE Foundation with support from Mahindra and Mahindra and in close partnership with the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and the Pune Traffic Police has launched Tactical Urbanism trials at the Undri Chowk and Khadi Machine Chowk.
Between 2017 to 2020, the Khadi Machine Chowk witnessed a total of 65 road crashes. The Undri Chowk, from 2017 to 2019, registered a total of 34 road crashes.
Tactical Urbanism (TU) trials are temporary, quick, and relatively low-cost interventions that test out urban design, transportation planning, and infrastructural changes for improving road safety for all road users, especially the most vulnerable, like pedestrians, cyclists, and other non-motorized transport (NMT) users. Once the interventions are proven, the relevant Government agencies are expected to make them permanent.
As part of the Zero Fatality Corridor (ZFC) Project, SaveLIFE Foundation is testing temporary urban design interventions to improve safety for pedestrians and other road users in various cities across India. The Pune trials include reclaiming spaces to create a wider, more continuous public realm, including safer walkways, traffic islands, pedestrian refuges,s, and shorter, safer, and more comfortable crossings. The other interventions include orienting and pre-informing users through wayfinding and signages and geometric correction through T junctions to streamline traffic. The Undri Chowk and Khadi Machine Chowk interventions are the first such endeavors underway within Pune city. SaveLIFE Foundation has thus far conducted similar tactical redesigns at Karla Phata and Kanhe Phata on NH48 in Maharashtra and at Bhalswa Chowk, Rajghat Intersection, Burari Chowk, and Gandhi Vihar in New Delhi.
Speaking about the need to support such interventions, Veejay Nakra, CEO, Automotive Division, Mahindra and Mahindra, said, “The key to reducing road accidents lies in innovatively devising ingenious solutions. To this effect, Mahindra and Mahindra are proud to have partnered with the SaveLIFE Foundation for the last seven years to reduce road accidents, injuries, and fatalities in Maharashtra. Through the collaborative initiative for Zero Fatality Corridor (ZFC), which is the first of its kind in Pune, we hope to create a replicable model that becomes a benchmark, not just for Pune and Maharashtra, but for the rest of India too.”
Vikram Kumar, Municipal Commissioner, Pune, said, “For pedestrian safety, SaveLIFE Foundation and Pune Municipal Corporation are jointly working to improve the black spots in Pune. The purpose of this pilot Tactical Urbanism project at Undri Chowk, Pune is to make this intersection safer for both pedestrians and cyclists.”
Commenting on this, Piyush Tewari, CEO, of SaveLIFE Foundation said, “As a part of SLF’s Zero-Fatality Corridor model—of which these TU trials are a part—we conduct a detailed investigation to ascertain the best possible interventions and solutions aimed at minimizing road crashes and consequent fatalities, to save lives. After these solutions emerge as the right choice for the road safety concerns at hand, we work in collaboration with the relevant Government authorities to make them permanent and replicate them within similar contexts. We are grateful to Mahindra and Mahindra, the Pune Municipal Commission, and the Pune Traffic Police for collaborating with us for improving road safety in Pune.”
At the Khadi Machine Chowk, these interventions have helped reduce the exposure distance and time by over 30%. The public realm there has increased by 120%. Similarly, at the Undri Chowk, the interventions have helped increase the public realm by 314% and reduced the exposure distance and time by 40 %.