This time, I got to know the city much more than earlier. This is now to the extent that it will be difficult for any auto rickshaw driver to take me for granted any more. I can still remember the time when someone had charged me Rs. 140 for around 6-7 Kms :-(
Few interesting things that I learned are
- Never try to criticize Shivaji at any cost in this city. It is not that I invited some trouble, but just learned it.
- Pune is fast giving competition to Bangalore in all aspects. Be it traffic, IT parks, rents or real estate prices, it is almost emulating Bangalore in every way. Add to that the generally cool environment here, it is really getting bangalored quickly.
- IT parks in Pune will soon overcome Bangalore in a big way. I just had a look at the new Infosys facility which is still developing in MIDC Phase 2 and the scale of operations are really mammoth. 40 buildings that can house ~25000 people in one campus can probably be done by Infosys only. WIPRO also has good center there and I probably liked first WIPRO building in MIDC Phase 2.
- Restaurants in this city are still catering to predominantly student population only. Only few have upgraded their standards according to new age professionals coming into the city.
- Army bases need to move out of the city now to make way for better city infrastructure.
- More buses needs to ply on the road although it is progressing in correct directions.
- Motorists needs to be more willing to respect traffic signals.
Basically, if it grows correctly, very soon it can be worthy competitor to Mumbai and very well help decongest Mumbai. And if Bangalore does not catch up fast, Pune can become IT capital of India. Hyderabad is nowhere in race for sure.