Speakers at a press briefing demanded alternative transport system in the city which they said should be safe and environment friendly. They also suggested encouraging walkaways for pedestrians to avail the facilities.
The speakers observed that about 80 percent of travel by private cars in Dhaka city take place within five kilometers and out of which half of them travel within two kilometers.
Disclosing the above information, Shabiha Pervin, executive director of the Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority (DTCA) has said that if there are facilities for safe walking and cycling in the city, many people would take the facilities.
She said these at a press briefing held at the office of the DTCA in the capital. The press briefing was organized on the occasion of the DTCA’s month long-programme to observe the World Car Free Day-2022.
The day was observed on Thursday (September 22) with the slogan encouraging people to ‘control fuel and car use and traffic congestion.’ Different organizations also observed the day.Different non-government organisations started to observe the day in Bangladesh from 2006 and the government from 2016.
Participants of different events on the World Car Free Day emphasized on safe walking and cycling in the city. They said that there is no alternative to developing an integrated transport system with emphasis on walking, cycling and public transport by controlling private cars in order to reduce pollution, traffic congestion, negative impacts of climate change and dependence on fossil fuels.
Sheikh Mohammad Hossain Khokon, councilor from Ward 34 of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) at an awareness rally on the World Car Free Day said that most of the travel by cars in Dhaka city take place on an average within two to five kilometers distance. If safe and pleasant walking environment is created, this will encourage people to walk and avoid using private cars for many daily activities.
Speaking as the chief guest, the Ward Councilor at the event said that the energy, oil and gas crisis in Bangladesh has reached an alarming level and this crisis will increase further. Controlling the use of private cars in the city and ensuring a healthy environment for walking and cycling would play a vital role in addressing the energy crisis.
The awareness rally titled, ‘Control of Private Cars to Save Fuel Consumption and Reduce Traffic Congestion’ was held at Dhanmondi-27 in the capital.
Work for a Better Bangladesh (WBB) Trust, the Institute of Wellbeing (IWB) Bangladesh, Carfree Cities Alliance Bangladesh, Chayatal Bangladesh, Rayer Bazar High School, Dhaka Ideal Cadet School, Dhanmondi Kachikanth High School and Ali Hossain Girls School jointly arranged the event.
Gaous Pearee, director at WBB Trust presided over the event, while Debra Efroymson, regional director of HealthBridge Foundation of Canada delivered the welcome speech.
Moderated by Ziaur Rahman, senior project manager of the WBB Trust; the event was addressed, among others, by HM Nurul Islam, headmaster of Dhanmondi Kachikanth High School, MA Mannan Monir, headmaster of Dhaka Ideal Cadet School, Tahajjot Hossain of Rayer Bazar High School, Aminul Islam Tubbus, president of Cycle Lane Bastobayon Parishad, and Mahbubul Haque, executive director and CEO at Center for Manobadhikar Unnoyon Kendra.
A number of students from five schools participated in the rally and they raised their voice in favour of safe walking environment in the capital.
The speakers said that a private car occupies one per cent space on the road and carries 2.20 passengers on average. On the other hand, a bus occupies two per cent space, but carries 44.20 passengers on average.