Not all changes are created equal; these are some of the good ones
In the year 2017, Dhaka has seen development in various sectors – be it in terms of infrastructure, beautification or transportation. Basically, it can be said that life in Dhaka has gotten better and easier for its residents. With 2017 coming to an end, let’s have a look at how Dhaka has changed (for the better, of course) this year.
If you happen to be living in Dhaka, your worst nightmare (among many others) would be beating the horrendous traffic and getting to your desired location, be it any time of the day. But one of the best things that ever happened to Dhaka was when Uber (e-hailing service that connects passengers with drivers via a mobile phone app) decided to launch in Dhaka last year. And in 2017, things only got better when other platforms like Pathao and Uber Moto were introduced. The use of these ride-sharing services that connect passengers with drivers via a mobile phone app have been one of the best ways to beat the unbearable traffic in the metropolis.
2017 saw the people of Dhaka making their way through water, after trying to beat the dreadful traffic on the roads every single day.
Water taxi service in Hatirjheel has gained an enormous amount of popularity this year, as many commuters are using the waterway everyday to avoid traffic congestion on the road.
The service runs on three routes – Gudaraghat in Gulshan 1 to FDC, Merul Badda to FDC and FDC to Merul Badda and Gudaraghat. According to the Transport management officials, the water taxis are now ferrying around 1,500 passengers every day on an average on the two routes. Dhakaites feel water taxis are a smooth and hassle-free service – the fare is a little higher than bus fares though, but it is okay considering the time.
In the last few years, Dhaka has seen major development in its roads and highways. A good number of flyovers have been constructed this year, while there are some undergoing projects yet to be completed. Mostly having only two lanes even five years ago, highways got bigger and better this year, with four lanes. Moreover, roads and streets in the city were extended, in order to reduce traffic congestion.
With the growing number of cars on the streets, new flyover construction projects have been undertaken this year to alleviate traffic congestion. For instance, the Moghbazar-Mouchak flyover has contributed to achieving that goal. People living in those areas will be able to commute much easier and faster.
However, the Moghbazar-Mouchak flyover was a cause for widespread criticism as well, due to two consecutive cost hikes and its faulty design. The flyover was mistakenly designed for left-hand driving, when, in Bangladesh, roads are made for right-hand driving. Despite all these, this is the first flyover which has traffic signals at the Mouchak and Malibagh intersection, whereas such infrastructures are generally built to allow uninterrupted traffic flow.
During the mayoral election, building decent public toilets to improve sanitation facility was one of main agendas. And, in the last one year, Dhaka has seen a rise in the number of decent public toilets. The DNCC inaugurated two new female and disabled people friendly public toilets, in Tejgaon Satrasta T&T Gate and Hazi Moron Ali Road. These toilets are equipped with separate chambers for both males and females, lockers, hand wash basins, showers, safe drinking water facility, electricity, and CCTV camera, professional cleaner, and female caretakers. A few months later, another new toilet with same facilities was opened in Bahadur Shah Park area, under the DSCC jurisdiction.