HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: A large number of Kathmandu Valley dwellers walk on foot rather than using motorised vehicles and bicycles, shows a JICA Nepal survey conducted in 2010.
According to the survey of 18,100 households, about 40 per cent of Kathmanduties walk, 26 per cent travel on motorcycle and 1.5 per cent use bicycle as their everyday mode of transport (excluding public transport users).
In 1991, walking made up 53 per cent of the travel mode, while bicycles and motorcycles made 6.6 per cent and 9.3 per cent, respectively.
The survey shows more people travelled on foot two decades ago. The use of motorcycle has gone up by almost three folds and bicycling has dropped to less than one-fourth.
According to the survey, the number of people using public transportation has slightly increased from 25.1 per cent to 26.9 per cent, mainly because of the two-fold increase in the number of people using micro and mini buses.
Of the 570,145 vehicles registered in Bagmati zone between 2001 and 2010, more than 93 per cent were private vehicles (cars, jeeps, vans and motorcycles) and only 3.5 per cent were for public transportation (buses, minibuses, microbuses and tempos). Rest of the vehicles were tucks, lorries and others.
The total number of person trips in the valley has doubled in the past two decades. During this period, motorcycle person trips increased by 5.8 times while car trips increased by 2.8 times, mainly due to growing population and the need for mobility.
The main requirements for passengers, according to the passenger interview survey, in the old bus park are: Less time for travel (26.6 per cent); cheaper fares (26.2 per cent), safety (18.1 per cent) and comfort (15.4 per cent).
In comparison, the main requirements for passengers in the Gongabu bus park are comfort (27.9 per cent) and safety (25.9per cent).
Findings of the survey
show that city bus users are more concerned about time and fare prices while long
distance bus passengers are more concerned about comfort and safety.
However, a significant number of city bus users are also concerned about comfort and safety.
Issues such as information, bus stops and frequency did not feature too high on the requirement list for both the city bus and long route bus users.
According to the survey, Thapathali Chowk in Kathmandu registers maximum traffic volume with 94,689 vehicles every 24 hours.