No don’t want new flyovers, residents tell T.S. Atul Swaminathan

Unhappy over the Chennai Corporation’s proposal to integrate South Usman Road and North Usman Road flyovers, the T. Nagar Residents’ Welfare Association has called it “a waste of tax payers’ money”.

The Corporation convened a meeting with the residents of T. Nagar with a feasibility report and a detailed project report for planning and construction of a grade separator connecting Anna Salai and Mahalingapuram by integrating South Usman Road and North Usman Road flyovers.

At the meet, four proposals were made, out of which three are under consideration. The remaining one was ruled out.

Alternatives include extension of the South Usman Road flyover on the southern side covering Burkit junction, an elevated two-lane corridor between Boag Road junction and beyond Bazullah Road Junction ending before Mahalingapuram flyover (which would disturb both the northern and southern approaches to the Usman Road flyover), and an elevated two-lane corridor between Boag Road junction and beyond Bazullah Road Junction ending before Mahalingapuram flyover (which will disturb only the southern approach to the Usman Road flyover).

The fourth alternative was found to be unviable was the elevated continuous/discontinuous corridor from Anna Salai to Mahalingapuram. The stakeholders have been asked to submit their opinions and suggestions on or before January 6.

At a meeting held recently, the residents were unanimous that there was no need to construct any more flyovers, and the best option would be to dismantle the existing flyover on South Usman Road to put an end to the problems in a cost-effective manner.

The residents contended that the South Usman Road flyover, which was constructed to de-congest traffic, has only created problems for the residents, hindering free movement of vehicles, ambulances, and fire engines during times of emergency.

“The flyover has encouraged illegal parking and hawking with no effective action being taken by the Chennai City Police, and the Chennai Corporation. With encroachments abutting the service lanes of Usman Road, restrictions have been imposed on the free-movement of the residents,” the Association said.

The present proposal of the Chennai Corporation to extend the flyovers and construct a new flyover would compound the woes of the residents, it pointed out.

The Association has decided to submit a petition to the Mayor Saidai Sa. Duraisamy to rescind the proposal, dismantle the South Usman Road flyover, which would solve encroachments by hawkers and traffic congestion, and request the construction of Y-shaped pedestrian sub-ways at Pothy’s junction on Duraiswamy Road, on Burkit Road, Madley Road, and near the T. Nagar bus terminus.

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