With MTC buses still plying from the old terminus, the new one at Tambaram Sanatorium is underutilised, reports T. Madhavan
Residents of Tambaram and adjoining areas had a lot of expectations from the newly inaugurated Anna Bus terminus at Tambaram Sanatorium. They thought all buses including those plying within city, inter-state and to the suburbs would be parked here, easing traffic movement on Grand Southern Trunk Road (GST Road). But much to their dismay, only long distance buses use the new terminus, while city buses continue to originate from GST road.
Nearly 500 bus services run by the Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (Villupuram) and the Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC) had been originating from near the intersection of GST Road and Gandhi Road. With the long distance buses shifting to the new terminus, the stretch between Rajaji Road and Gandhi Road has become free from congestion.
But peak hour traffic near the old terminus is still a concern. V. Srinivasan, a resident of Tambaram West, questioned the rationale behind opening a bus stand to serve only long distance buses whereas hundreds of city buses were being parked on GST Road adding to peak-hour congestion.
According to MTC sources, city buses have not been moved to the new terminus because commuters would find it difficult to reach Tambaram Sanatorium.
On the positive side, the new terminus has reduced traffic in front of Madras Export Processing Zone.
P. Bharathi, a regular commuter from East Tambaram suggested that buses from Tambaram West Terminus to Velachery could originate from the new terminus, covering one-and a half km more and benefitting thousands of commuters from MEPZ.
At present, commuters arriving at the Sanatorium terminus are welcomed by vacant bus bays. The Tambaram Municipality has constructed 30 shops and allotted space for a food court. But, the transport department staff on duty at the new terminus said it would take a while for things to settle down and the terminus to become fully operational. They said they were expecting augmentation of bus services in the coming months.