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An analysis of the causes of claustrophobic traffic in Lahore

08:12 PM | 10 Jan, 2017
An analysis of the causes of claustrophobic traffic in Lahore
Any resident of Lahore would know that the traffic density has substantially increased over the past couple of years. It is not uncommon to get stuck in heavy traffic jams even when covering small distances. It is also not uncommon to find that the cause of traffic is basically nothing. On rare occasions an accident or construction or a procession stops the flow but most of the times, just like the brains of Lahore’s traffic planners, it is nothing.

The blame game starts from the increasing population of the country and the city, increase in shifts to the city of Lahore from different cities, the availability of at least 2 cars in one household thickening traffic probabilities, the government, the ill-discipline of the locals to bad timing.

With the recent slapdash developments refashioning the outlook of the city, some serious mal-adjustments have come up as after effects of the remodeling and the citizens are the ones who suffer.

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The city of Lahore occupies an area of almost 19 billion square feet with wide and short, long and lean roads, which means that there is no reason for minor traffic jams. It has however fallen victim to bad planning.

From the last 30 to 40 years there has been no effective traffic planning in Pakistan. In the time of President Ayub Khan there were 4 ongoing five year plans.

Roads need to be made according to the changing needs of the cities. Planners have only one thing on their minds and that is to prove to the world that this is a San Francisco or a New York or perhaps a Paris. The local mindset, mentality and geographic demographic is not taken into account as it should be.

We need to carry out our planning according to the behavior of our people. We think they are disciplined people, we think they will obey the traffic laws. Our locals will always economize and optimize. They will always take the shortest route possible.They will jump across walls, cross footpaths with cars and bikes and disrupt one-ways. It is true that we totally lack discipline as a community. We don’t obey traffic signals, we do not obey the traffic rules, and we do not respect the law.

The locals look for shortcuts in life and the greater benefit of abiding by traffic rules is generally ignored.

The administrators of traffic are equally responsible for all this chaos. With severe lack of traffic planning we come up with bright ideas of making super highways without due consideration to everything that will happen below that cemented semi-halo. There can be seen a mash-up of traffic right before the bridge and right after it and often times on it as well. It is also a scary realization that bridges are not made for holding static traffic but they support the weight of moving traffic. That is their design.

It is unfortunate that we do not have a panoramic view or an overall aerial view when making policies.

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Our views revolve around the rich and the poor segment of society. There are different traffic rules for the richer segment and different ones for the poorer folk.

Another local demographic and cause is that traffic in Lahore and Pakistan is multi-factored. The road is a place not just for cars but rickshaws, variations of rickshaws, vans of various sorts, big trucks, small trucks, transport vehicles, donkey-carts, bikes, cycles and pedestrians. This leads to a diverse mix of vehicles on the roads.

A primary solution is the need for overall planning. In addition, routes need to be opened, bottlenecks need to be opened. Some routes remain closed only for the facility of the traffic wardens.

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The traffic wardens in Pakistan are also probably the only traffic force in the world that gets paid for making challans and gets a percentage of the challan dues. That is why they are so aggressive in challaning you.

Interventions need to be made to facilitate the residents of the beautiful city of Lahore.

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Rupee exchange rate to US Dollar, Euro, Pound, Dirham, and Riyal - 28 Feb 2024

Pakistani currency remains momentum against US dollar in the open market on February 28, 2024 (Wednesday).

US Dollar rate in Pakistan

In the open market, the US dollar moves up and currently hovers at 282 for buying and 282.25 for selling.

Euro currently stands at 303.1 for buying and 306.1 for selling while British Pound rate stands at 351.6 for buying, and 355.1 for selling.

UAE Dirham AED hovers at 76.1 whereas the Saudi Riyal saw slight increase, with new rates at 74.25.

Today’s currency exchange rates in Pakistan - 28 Feb 2024

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 282 282.25
Euro EUR 303.1 306.1
UK Pound Sterling GBP 351.6 355.1
U.A.E Dirham AED 76.1 76.8
Saudi Riyal SAR 74.25 75.05
Australian Dollar AUD 181.1 183.1
Bahrain Dinar BHD 742.91 750.91
Canadian Dollar CAD 207.1 209.1
China Yuan CNY 38.87 39.27
Danish Krone DKK 40.61 41
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.75 36.1
Indian Rupee INR 3.37 3.48
Japanese Yen JPY 2.10 2.18
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 905.46 914.46
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 58.5 59.1
New Zealand Dollar NZD 173.05 175.05
Norwegians Krone NOK 26.41 26.71
Omani Riyal OMR 725.54 733.54
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.74 77.44
Singapore Dollar SGD 207.15 209.15
Swedish Korona SEK 27.04 27.34
Swiss Franc CHF 317 319.5
Thai Bhat THB 7.76 7.91

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