SUBJECT : Mysuru ready to embrace cyclists

The project will be rolled out by March end or early April, says Deputy Commissioner C. Shikha

The number of cyclists is expected to go up with the launch of the Public Bicycle Sharing System.— FILE PHOTO: M.A. SRIRAM

Mysuru, March 8th: The country’s first Public Bicycle Sharing System (PBSS), which was supposed to be operational in Mysuru by now, has been delayed by the recent panchayat elections. But officials expect it to be up and running in a month’s time.

Though it was initially planned that PBSS would be launched with half-a-dozen docking stations, plans are afoot to establish all 42 docking stations and launch the initiative.

PBSS facilitates hiring of bicycles on rental basis. Green Wheel Ride, which had bagged the project contract, has taken up the task of establishing docking stations, a control room and other infrastructure.

PBSS was proposed to popularise eco-friendly and non-motorised transport in the city, which recently bagged the cleanest city tag for the second straight time. In the initial stage, over 450 bicycles will be available for hire.

Deputy Commissioner C. Shikha told The Hindu that PBSS would have been operational by now had it not been for the elections. “The work will get expedited now and the launch is likely by March-end or early April,” she said.

She said a work order had been issued and the agency has started procuring bicycles. “The type of cycles used under PBSS has been approved by us,” she said.

About the project

After the Directorate of Urban Land Transport (DULT), Government of Karnataka, conceptualised the project, Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) was identified as an implementing agency.

The World Bank has released Rs. 20.52 crore under its Global Environmental Facility (GEF) programme for launching the project. DULT has promised Rs. 9.6 crore for the project while MCC has taken up the responsibility of meeting the operational and maintenance costs (about Rs. 2 crore) for six years.

Docking stations have been proposed at tourist spots such as the Mysuru Zoo, Mysuru Palace, Jaganmohan Palace, Lalith Mahal Palace, Chamundi Hills, Karanji Lake Nature Park, Kukkarahalli Lake and St. Philomena’s Church.

The stations have been also proposed at Crawford Hall, institutions such as IGRMS, ISKCON, outside the Infosys campus in Hebbal here and commercial hubs like D. Devaraja Urs Road and Sayyaji Rao Road.

Source: The Hindu