E-bikes, cycles to give last-mile connectivity a boost across Delhi’s Dwarka

Sep 21, 2023 11:52 PM IST

The transport department in Delhi plans to deploy 3,000 e-bikes and e-cycles across Dwarka sub-city to serve as last-mile connectivity options. The vehicles will be placed at transit hubs like metro stations and bus stops. The department has floated tenders for high-speed and low-speed electric two-wheelers and will conduct a study to finalise docking station locations. The initiative aims to improve connectivity and promote green mobility in the area.

The transport department will deploy a total of 3,000 e-bikes and e-cycles across the Dwarka sub-city area around transit hubs like Metro stations and bus stops to serve as sustainable last-mile connectivity options, according to officials aware of the matter.

The transport department proposal will complement the existing public transportation options at Metro stations. (HT Archive)
The transport department proposal will complement the existing public transportation options at Metro stations. (HT Archive)

The department plans to deploy these in phases at around 250 locations across Dwarka and the department has floated tenders for both high-speed and low-speed electric two-wheelers, the officials added.

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The request for proposal, worth 18 crore, was floated to select a service provider to deploy high and low-speed e-two-wheelers under a single package, they said. However, officials were unable to provide a timeframe for the project.

The department will soon conduct a study to finalise spots for docking stations. Apart from Metro stations, the docks may be placed at the gates of societies, inside larger housing societies, district centres, office complexes, and malls, they added.

“The tender is to procure electric vehicles in three phases. We will set up docking stations at various places like transit nodes and other public spaces where demand for public transport is high. In the first phase we will procure equally distributed high-speed and low-speed vehicles, while in the other two phases, we will keep it flexible depending on the initial response,” said Ashish Kundra, transport secretary cum commissioner.

The Dwarka sub-city, in south-west Delhi, has an estimated population of nearly 1 million comprising mostly middle and upper-middle-income groups. Conceptualised in the 1980s, it is one of the largest residential hubs with high-rise apartment complexes. There are 352 cooperative group housing societies and 52 pockets developed by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA).

However, around three decades later, the area still suffers from poor connectivity, especially informal public transport for areas in the vicinity.

The Metro corridor between Dwarka and Barakhamba Road opened on December 31, 2005, providing connectivity to the rest of Delhi. The Metro corridor today connects the Dwarka stations with Noida City Centre and Vaishali in Ghaziabad and is the busiest of Delhi Metro’s 14 corridors.

Residents said that along with last-mile connectivity, safety during travel is also a problem in Dwarka areas.

“People here are largely dependent on private cabs and use cab aggregator services. Apart from these, there are just e-rickshaws around Metro stations and some society gates, used by senior citizens. There are very few autos and even the bus service is unreliable,” said Ranvir Kumar, society manager of Lovely Homes CGHS.

Experts weighed in and said more last-mile connectivity options in Dwarka sub-city were a good idea, especially if these were electric vehicles that might encourage green mobility. However, effective redistribution is key for a successful implementation of the project, they said.

“This is a commendable initiative. Offering both high and low-speed electric two-wheelers caters to diverse commuter needs, encouraging green mobility. The phased rollout displays smart planning as it allows the testing and calibration of the deployment process. However, redistribution of these e-bikes and cycles will be crucial since they will move to Metro stations in the morning and away from them in the evening,” said Amit Bhatt, managing director (India), International Council of Clean Transport (ICCT).

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