Shimla: Traffic jam has become a routine on the busy circular road of the Shimla city. Increasing dependence on the congested roads, idle parking, ever increasing vehicles and lack of proper parking felicities are the main cause behind traffic congestion in the city.

Time and again, locals have raised demand to decongest the main road in the city, but little or no success. Finally it seems like Shimla traffic woes have succeeded in getting attention of policy makers. The Chief Minister, in his reply to the question of Kasumpati legislature Anirudh Singh, informed the house about their plan to lessen traffic pressure on the city circular road by constructing five new link roads, parking slots and four tunnels.

The circular road carries maximum traffic of the city and to ensure smooth traffic, the PWD has decided to widen the complete 17 km road upto double lane standard. The CM informed the house that 13 km. road has already been widened and in the remaining 4 km. length, 70 narrow spots have been identified for widening.

The Chief Minister further informed that five link roads namely Ruldu Bhatta to Sankli (0.6km.), Hotel Holiday Home to Darni ka Bagicha (4.3 km.), Chhota Shimla to Shanan via Dhobighatt (4.3 km.), Bhumiya to Shanan on NH Bye Pass (3.7 km.) and Bemloe to Tutti Kandi via Krishna Nagar (3 km.) have been proposed, and the budget provision of Rs. 10 crore has been made in the financial year 2016-17.

In addition four tunnels viz. Lift to Lakkar Bazar on circular road (681 mtr.), Lift to Himfed petrol pump on circular road (1135 mtr.), Himfed petrol pump to IGMC on circular road (890 mtr.) and Sanjauli Dhalli tunnel parallel to existing tunnel (148 mtr.) have also been identified to solve the problem of congestion in the long run, Virbhadra Singh informed the house.

The policymakers have also aimed to rein the long standing problem of the parking facilities and constructing 15 new parking slots with their joint capacity of 744 vehicles, besides parking slots at Chhota Shimla and near Combermere Nallah, which are on the verge of completion, in various parts of the city.

Authority is also mulling to restrict the entry of vehicles especially trucks passing through the city. The government has sanctioned Rs. 21.17 crores to strengthen the Shoghi- Mehli road. It has also sanctioned Rs. 9.95 crore to strengthen the Lakkar Bazar – Dhalli road.