Daily English Vocab
Unclogging The Cities
The move to make New Delhi’s iconic Connaught Place a pedestrian zone from February, and keep out cars and other vehicles from its middle and inner circle roads, during a three-month trial programme is an inspiring attempt to reconquer public space. Urban design in India is the preserve (परिरक्षित/सुरक्षित) of State governments and local bodies, which have failed spectacularly (असाधारण रूप से) to provide a safe, comfortable and accessible experience for walkers. The pilot project in the national capital represents a refreshing change, taking a leaf out of the book of global cities that have pedestrianised their landmarks, often in the face of conservative opposition. Prominent (महत्त्वपूर्ण/विशिष्ठ) examples are Times Square in New York and the route along the Seine in Paris, and the curbs on cars in central avenue in Madrid. Contrary to apprehensions (भय/शंका) that restrictions affect commercial activity, the experience around the world has been quite the opposite: better walking and public transport infrastructure and availability of food plazas attract more people, improving the local economy. In America, pedestrian injuries decreased after vehicles were removed from Times Square, beginning seven years ago. Globally this has been the trend too when cities curb car use and clean up the air. Such examples should convince the Ministry of Urban Development that it is moving in the right direction, and if anything, this needs to be extended to other cities.
Keeping powered vehicles out of core areas, expanding pavements for pedestrians and facilitating (सुगम बनाना) the use of bicycles is today a high-priority goal for mayors and urban governments the world over. In the intermediate phase, many cities find it rewarding to levy (आरोपित या लागू करना) a stiff congestion (भरा हुआ होना/जमाव) charge on personal vehicles entering designated areas. This is a mature idea and needs to be trialled in India, under its ongoing smart cities programme. It should be mandated by law that all proceeds would go towards funding walking, bicycling and emissions-free public transport infrastructure. The importance of such a levy is evident from a study by Transport for London in 2014-15, that found the British capital losing £5.5 billion a year in financial costs arising from congestion. Measures to unclog cities are often posed, wrongly, as detrimental (अहितकारी/हानिकारिक/क्षतिकारक) to the economy and efficiency. While cars will continue to remain relevant for longer-distance travel, dense urban areas need relief from excessive motorization. Union Minister for Urban Development M. Venkaiah Naidu has favoured people-centric ideas for Connaught Place, including aesthetic (सौम्य अभिरूप) features such as water fountains and areas for relaxation. These are not expensive to put in, and State governments must extend the template to all cities and towns, acknowledging (मान लेना/स्वीकार करना) the wider social benefits.
Courtesy: The Hindu (National Concern)
1. Preserve (noun): A sphere of activity regarded as being reserved for a particular person or group. (परिरक्षित/सुरक्षित)
Example: The preserve in the vicinity of capital Delhi is called NCR.
Verb forms: Preserve, Preserved, Preserved.
2. Spectacularly (adverb): In a dramatic and eye-catching way. (असाधारण रूप से)
Example: The Company’s new policies were spectacularly failed as the revenue was decreased substantially after the implementation.
3. Prominent (adjective): Showing distinction above others in a specific area. (महत्त्वपूर्ण/विशिष्ठ)
Example: Once Jacob won the lottery, he sold his humble home and moved to one of the most prominent areas of the city.
4. Apprehension (noun): Suspicion or fear especially of future evil/ anxiety or fear that something bad or unpleasant will happen. (भय/शंका)
Example: Apprehensive about the consequences of texting and driving, Jill turned her phone off.
Verb forms: Apprehend, Apprehended, Apprehended.
5. Facilitate (verb): Make (an action or process) easy or easier. (सुगम बनाना)
Example: The government is looking for ways to facilitate foreign investment in our country.
Verb forms: Facilitate, Facilitated, Facilitated.
6. Levy (verb): A charge imposed and collected. (आरोपित या लागू करना)
Example: When the governor decided to levy additional fees on tobacco products, smokers took to the streets in protest.
Verb forms: Levy, Levied, Levied.
7. Congestion (noun): To make too crowded or full/ to cause an excessive accumulation. (भरा हुआ होना/जमाव)
Example: Then sudden arrival of prime minister at the functions caused congestion on the roads.
Verb forms: Congest, Congested, Congested.
8. Detrimental (adjective): Tending to cause harm. (अहितकारी/हानिकारिक/क्षतिकारक)
Example: The government has the authority to imprison anyone it deems as being detrimental to the country’s safety.
9. Aesthetic (adjective): Concerned with beauty or the appreciation of beauty. ( सौम्य अभिरूप)
Example: Because Henry could see both the mountains and the ocean from his hotel room, he really enjoyed the aesthetic view.
10. Acknowledge (verb): Accept or admit the existence of/ recognize the importance or quality of. (मान लेना/स्वीकार करना)
Example: If you want to be forgiven, you should acknowledge your mistakes.
Verb forms: Acknowledge, Acknowledged, Acknowledged.