(Wow! Read Peter’s last sentence…Couldn’t agree more…JVH
India has one of the fastest growing economies in the world and this carries the attendant problems of rapid growth in car use and government systems that can’t adapt to the new realities. A prime example of this is what is going on in Varanasi just now. The City Development Authority the Varanasi Development Authority (VDA) decided to build three car parks. Their first mistake was to list a park which was owned by a trust. Surprise surprise the trustees didn’t want a car park replacing their green space so the list goes down to two. The next part of the plan was to build the facilities via a Public Private Partnership or PPP. Two years on and there are no takers. The reason isn’t hard to find. The dense city centre had no parking controls and there is a free-for-all on the city streets. Meanwhile the City Council Varanasi Nagar Nigam (VNN) has implemented some street parking which seems to have matters worse not better.
It is an old saying that those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat its mistakes and so here are two lessons for Varanasi; One, do not have two separate agencies VDA, VNN trying to deal with parking, they won’t work together and you will end up trying to face two ways at the same time. Two you can’t get the private sector involved in a PPP parking project when the street outside is free.