Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday laid the foundation stone for the ‘Delhi CycleWalk’, a dedicated 200-km track for cycling and walking, claiming it will reduce pollution in the national capital "at least by 20 per cent".
The ‘CycleWalk’, to be built in the city over the next four years, will give an impetus to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of ‘Fit India’, he said.
"It will reduce air pollution of Delhi by at least 20 per cent and green commuting will now be possible in the city," Shah said, addressing the gathering.
The move will usher in an era where green transportation like cycles will become fashionable and will be widely used, he said.
Around 11 lakh people in the city commute on bicycles at present, and efforts should be made to increase this number to 50 lakh, which would make a major difference in Delhi’s traffic and pollution levels, the home minister said.
He suggested that the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) establish cycle clubs and encourage the use of cycles by all citizens, especially college-going students.
Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said the corridor will loop around the city like a ring and connect with metro stations, bus stands, high density residential areas, business districts and industrial, recreational and educational districts.
"The CycleWalk will also connect all master plan greens and make Delhi a city of connected forests and lakes with the objective to promote a healthy lifestyle and provide last mile connectivity. This will become a safer and greener alternative that would reduce vehicular traffic in the city," he tweeted.
According to the DDA, the project seeks to make the city most walkable and environment-friendly and its total cost is estimated to be is Rs 550 crore.
"While the whole network over the years shall exceed 200 km, in phase one it will be 36 km," the DDA said.
"There are three lines chosen for fast and quick adaption. Also, these areas have abundant forests, dense residential areas and workplaces in close proximity."
The three lines are — Nilgai Line: Badarpur to Malviya Nagar metro station (20.5 km); Peacock Line: Malviya Nagar metro station to Vasant Kunj Mall (8.5 km); and Bulbul Line: Chirag Dilli to Nehru Place and ISKCON Temple, it said.