As if the battered roads were not enough, motorists of Korattur have had to take a detour of several km for the past couple of days.

The level crossing gate at Korattur railway station that provides a link between the northern and southern parts of Korattur was closed three days ago for the proposed road overbridge. Hundreds of people in areas such as Srinivasapuram and Agraharam along North Railway Station cross the Level Crossing 4 to commute to schools and colleges in the southern part. The closing of LC4 is another blow to residents who are reeling under poor infrastructure in the locality.

A notice has been stuck on LC 4 declaring it closed. While entry has been blocked for two-wheelers and cars, cyclists and pedestrians take the risk of crossing the gate. Residents, who are looking forward to the overbridge project as it will help reduce the waiting time at the crossing, are irritated that they have to take a considerable detour. Several trains, including those bound to Arakkonam, pass that way.

Nirmal Parasmal, a resident of Korattur, said “I have to take a detour of at least 5 km via bad roads to reach the southern part of Korattur that is less than half a km away from the LC gate. I now park my vehicle near the railway gate and walk or spend on an autorickshaw.” he said.

Others said that they have had to travel through busy arterial roads such as Inner Ring Road and Chennai Tiruvallur High Road as there is no alternative route.

They said that the detour will cause great difficulty to citizens as schools are set to reopen next week. They suggested that the Southern Railways provide a diversion via Balaji Nagar to southern Korattur

G. Mythili, a resident, said that this was only the latest in a series of infrastructural hassles. “The Sivalingapuram Main Road was dug up several months ago for providing underground drainage network. The roads are slushy. We don’t get drinking water as the lines have been cut off during the work. Water tankers also don’t come to our area as the roads are battered. Now, the railway gate has also been closed. We don’t know how we will commute to other areas,” she said.

Officials of the Southern Railways said that the level crossing gate has been closed to take up piling work for the road overbridge. The project would begin once some formalities with the State government are completed. “We are looking into the possibility of providing the alternative route suggested by residents,” sources said.

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