The Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has started replacing old traffic at city’s major intersections, reports The Rising Nepal.
The Department of Roads (DoR) failed to make the existing traffic lights functional so KMC has taken the initiative to fix the traffic lights together with the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division (MTPD) and the DoR.
According to executive officer of KMC Dhani Ram Sharma, KMC was installing traffic lights at two major intersections: Chakrapath and New Baneshwore. Sharma informed that the lights were being installed at trial basis using a local technology developed by Nepali engineers.
The developers of this techonology have claimed that their technology is fully automated. With this technology, the traffic signals can now be handled directly from the master control room of the traffic police.
If these trials yield positive results, KMC will soon replace all old traffic lights and also install new ones in different locations.
Past two attempts to manage traffic lights by DoR have failed due to overbidding by the contractors. Because of this, 16 major intersections have nonfunctional traffic lights.
The MTPD says that traffic lights had been installed at 36 different sites of the Kathmandu Valley.
Umesh Ranjitkar, spokesperson and Senior Superintendent of Police at the MTPD said that it was not possible to manage Kathmandu’s traffic only by repairing the existing traffic lights as they were based on old technology.
According to him, the increased no. of vehicles cannot be handled by the existing manual technology-based traffic lights. He said, “We need advanced technology-based traffic signals which can be handled from the master control room. The technology should have cameras installed in it to enable the traffic police to synchronise the traffic information to properly handle the traffic in all locations.”
Ranjitkar further added that due to the lack of traffic lights, the MTPD was forced to deploy a large number of its human resources to handle traffic in the Kathmandu Valley in a traditional way.