Monday, December 28, 2009

Summary of Improvements required...

Tourist flow and traffic From all the discussions so far we infer that the present carrying capacity of the infrastructure has reached its designed limits. The situation is further aggravated because of lack of effective management at the popular visitor site. There are about 70 vendors who have swarmed both sides of the already narrow road adding to the congestion. To add to the misery the place has around 70 odd horse-carts besides the regular traffic of motorized vehicles that ferry between 25 odd villages that have this single road as a major link to main road.

On an average peak day, there are about 300 foreign and close to 2000 domestic tourists visiting the place. At times there are more than 150 big and small vehicles occupying the parking lot which is designed to handle only a fraction of such traffic. This officially allotted space is also used by Jain tourists who generally travel in big numbers and use this spot for meeting and taking horse-carts to go further to Nandawart. And of course the tourists interested in buying the souvenirs also spend their time in same limited road space. All together this 150 mt stretch of road has seen what it means to be brimmed with people and parked vehicles.

The present system of single gate for entry and exit confines the movement of people to very limited space. There is a need to diversify and allocate spaces based on assets. The logical approach is a detailed study taking into context the local issues that identifies the enlarged scope of the interpretation and tourist engagement at the site.

Scope of Interaction with the Community
The tourists based on an official survey would like more interaction with the community. They seek a greater experience than just a visit to a historic site. We have the assets that can be developed into a better experience for the visitors while generating employment for the locals.

The present setup offers very little opportunity for the community- visitor interaction. There is just this 150 meter stretch of road where the souvenirs are sold. The road is subjected to loud traffic noises and congestion from it and standing amidst it all for a one to one conversation with the vendor and trying to get an insight into local culture isn’t an appealing pursuit. Therefore whatever little opportunity for community to benefit might exists is diluted by the presence of these inappropriate extenuating circumstances. Such ambience is not conducive for the development of the art and craft of the area where the older population and families with young kids might avoid such a venture altogether.

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