The stops were damaged in accidents and were in need of repair.
The Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) plans to start the service on this stretch in the next twothree months. The civic body will also construct another 22 bus stations on this stretch.
The civic body had widened the 12km stretch of PuneMumbai highway from Dapodi to Nigdi to 61m five years ago making it the widest in the municipal limits. It comprises a central portion of four concrete lanes called as an express corridor which enables the vehicles to travel from Bhakti-Shakti Chowk in Nigdi to Harris Bridge in Dapodi with a single stop at Nashik Phata Chowk.
A BRTS lane on either sides of the corridor and servi ce roads on both sides allows local vehicular traffic.
The civic body had plan ned to start the first BRTS in Pimpri Chinchwad on this highway stretch five years ago and a private contractor was commissioned to construct 16 bus stations on a build-operate-transfer basis. The bus stations were put up, but have been idle for the past four years. Some are used by beggars and the destitute as shelter while some locals use it for a game of cards or have a nap.
Two bus stations were damaged when they were hit by speeding heavy vehicles. They were on the service road and had no barricades. The bus station located near Hotel Mayur in Chinchwad has been badly damaged at least twice.
Speaking to TOI, Vijay Bhojane, spokesperson of the BRTS cell, said, “The contractor constructed 16 bus sta tions, of which two were da maged in accidents and have now been rebuilt. A structu ral audit of the existing 14 bus stations has been comp leted and the contractor has been directed to take appro priate measures to streng then them. Joint city engine er Rajan Patil has directed the contractor to complete the work soon so that the bus service can be started at the earliest.“
The contractor will strengthen the 14 bus stations at his own expense. The civic body had removed many bus shelters along the highway when it started constructing the BRTS stations forcing commuters to stand in the open braving the elements.
Speaking to TOI, Manav Kamble, president of Nagari Kamble, president of Nagari Hakka Suraksha Samiti, sa id, “The BRTS stations built in the middle of the highway have been lying idle for the last five years. The width of the service road has been re duced due to these bus sta tions leading to traffic conges tion on the service road du ring peak morning and eve ning hours.“
Source : TOI