Chock-o-block Mapusa faces traffic nightmare



MAPUSA : Being the commercial capital of North Goa, Mapusa town faces parking problem and traffic congestion. Every nook and corner of the town witnesses traffic jam, especially, during the peak hours, and on Friday weekly market day the situation becomes worse as the vendors conduct business along the roadsides.

Despite several resolutions to ease traffic congestion, and solve parking problem nothing has happened. Mapusa Municipal Council (MMC) is now completely relying on the new bus stand and the multi-storey parking projects to solve the parking issue.

The town is a transit point for the people of North Goa wherein people not only from neighbouring villages but also the whole of taluka come with their vehicles and park them wherever the space is available, and therefore, whichever parking lots are available remain occupied throughout the day.

Another reason for occurrence of the parking problem is the attitude of general public who park their vehicles in a haphazard manner, and anywhere and everywhere.

The problem escalates on the weekly market day when hundreds of people come to the market with vehicles and have to go round several times in search of parking space. Mostly, with there being hardly any parking spaces available, the owners are compelled to a park their vehicles on the roadsides, thus causing obstruction to smooth flow of traffic.

Bhagwan Raut, Tuem resident, said that “if everyone parks their vehicles properly thinking about others then the parking problem will be solved to a great extent. The issue is the haphazard manner in which the vehicles are parked on the roads.”

Mapusa traffic PI Roy Pereira said that “we have been deploying our staff to curb traffic congestion in the town but due to lack of parking spaces it becomes a problem to man the flow of traffic. Especially on the weekly market days, vendors sit on the roads occupying parking lots and this adds to the problem.”

He added that “every month 1,200 vehicles are registered at Mapusa which is putting a strain on the existing infrastructure which is not adequate and hence the problem is compounded.”

Currently, the work of laying of underground pipes for sewage treatment plant is going on due to which the roads in the town are in bad condition, causing inconvenience to the commuters.

Most roads are also ridden with potholes causing a lot of inconvenience to motorists especially the two-wheeler riders. The potholes have also added to the problem as vehicle movement is mostly slow on such stretches. A lot of roads in the town are also narrow and witness traffic chaos during rush hours. These roads also cannot be widened because of residential and commercial buildings on either side.

Areas like Khorlim, then the roads from Gandhi circle and the stretch of road between the Union Pharmacy till the Tar bridge near the church, from Maruti temple to court and further towards Karaswada are the main points where traffic congestion is witnessed on a daily basis.

In the past, the PWD had undertaken work of Canca bypass which was left incomplete. The bypass was proposed in order to reduce traffic strain on Khorlim road.

“The entire town faces congestion and lacks parking facilities. If the council had made a serious effort, the problem could have been solved. The major concern is the new constructions which are coming up and which do not have any parking provision,” said Sudesh Hasotikar, a local.

Ulhas Kulkarni, another resident, said that “recently Michael Lobo said road widening as per ODP cannot be done as buildings are coming in the way but the question is who has given permission to these buildings its town and country planning only. The authorities should have been vigilant while issuing permissions for constructions.”

On traffic and parking problem, Hussian Muzawar, municipal engineer said that “the council has been taking measures in order to solve congestion and parking woes. Once the new bus stand and the multi-storey parking projects are ready the problem will be solved.”