The Low Carbon Action Plan for Urban Freight (LCAP-UF) for Shimla was approved by Municipal Corporation Shimla during a meeting with the stakeholders that was held on the 26th of April 2022. A Presentation of the design concepts of the pilot project under Ecologistics was also discussed during the meeting.
Shimla Mayor Hon’ble Smt. Satya Kaundal, Deputy Mayor Hon’ble Shri Shailender Chauhan, in addition to representatives from the Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC), Himachal Pradesh State Marketing Board, National Highways Authority of India, Shimla Traffic Police, Vyapar Mandal Shimla, and Town and Country Planning Department, attended the event.
The meeting commenced with a briefing about the use of roads by and the emissions associated with the freight and logistics sector, followed by the findings of baseline reports. The LCAP-UF proposals were presented, followed by a discussion on the lack of suitable e-cargo vehicles for Shimla. The stakeholders proposed identification of land for parking of goods vehicles and the development of a trade hub for traders in the city, and welcomed a suggestion of using public buses for transporting consignments. Additionally, concerns were expressed about the working conditions of porters, and a proposal for the re-development of resting pedestals for porters was revived.
During the presentation of the design concepts of the pilot project, the stakeholders raised concerns regarding restrictions on the movement of freight vehicles during peak traffic hours and school timings, which left them only a small window to complete their operations, leading to more instances of these vehicles breaking traffic laws and receiving fines. Vyapar Mandal Shimla representatives suggested that each freight vehicle should be allowed a 30-minute window to complete its operations, and that specific areas of a road should be demarcated for loading/unloading of goods to streamline these activities. Representatives from the traffic police proposed that every ward of the city should have multi-level parking areas to help decongest the roads. The EcoLogistics project is supported by German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, and Nuclear Safety through the International Climate Initiative.
The meeting ended with Commissioner of Municipal Corporation Shimla thanking ICLEI South Asia for providing technical support for the study of the urban freight sector in the city.