EMBARQ India Staff Speak at TERI Workshop
3rd – 5th October 2012, New Delhi: The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and UN-Habitat organised a three-day workshop titled ‘Mobility for Poor: Improving Informal Transport’ in New Delhi from October 3rd to 5th, 2012. The workshop part of the ‘pro-poor mobility component’ of the Global Energy Network for Urban Settlements (GENUS) project of UN-Habitat. The objective was to create a platform for sharing knowledge and experience using case studies from India and abroad on the challenges and opportunities to promote informal modes of transport in cities as key providers of mobility as well as a means of livelihood for the urban poor. The workshop aimed at answering the question of whether informal modes of transport in fact represent mobility for the poor, by the poor.
The workshop sessions were organised into the following themes:
• What is informal transport – Arriving at a common definition for what are the key characteristics of informal modes of transport in cities
• What is the role of informal transport modes in meeting the mobility needs of the poor and low income population
• What are the challenges and solutions to improve informal transport in cities
The workshop was attended by government officials, policy makers, civil society members, academicians, researchers, consultants, entrepreneurs, and journalists, interested in the area of informal public transport in cities.
Amit Bhatt, Strategy Head – Integrated Urban Transport, EMBARQ India, presented on the Inclusion of Informal Transport in Urban Transport Planning: A Case Study from Indore. The presentation highlighted the need for integrated planning involving formal and informal modes of transportation. Amit presented the details of the cycle rental market in Indore and explained this sytem provides for the mobility needs to the poor. Amit also updated the current status of the Indore BRTS project and highlighted the need for integrating the current informal modes of transport with the proposed BRTS.
Akshay Mani, Project Manager – Urban Transport, EMBARQ India, presented the Case Study of the G-Auto - the auto-rickshaw reform project in Rajkot, which showcases the initiative of the city of Rajkot in identifying challenges and implementing innovative solutions to improve the intermediate public transport (IPT) system in the city. The presentation focused on various key aspects of the project, including i) the focus on understanding the role of the sector in urban transport, ii) identifying the challenges, iii) working with various stakeholders to bring about improvements on the ground, and recommendations on what other cities can learn from the experience in Rajkot.
The workshop presented an opportunity for EMBARQ India staff to network with leading experts, share EMBARQ India’s work, and learn about latest innovations and policy reforms in the area of informal public transport in cities. EMBARQ India will continue to engage with TERI, UN-Habitat and other stakeholders in the future to identify areas for collaboration, to promote this sector as an important component of urban mobility.