While residents want the long-neglected Chennai Tiruvallur High Road to be upgraded to a six-lane road, a few traders’ federations, which include Tamil Nadu Vanigar Sangankalin Peravai, have opposed the proposal. Members of the traders’ federation recently submitted a petition to the Chief Minister, appealing that the road be relaid as a four-lane facility.

S.S. Kumar of Korattur says the road map prepared a few years ago was not implemented for political reasons. However, the State Highways Department has levelled the road surface with mud and stones for blacktopping work. As the blacktopping was not taken up immediately, the road becomes slushy and waterlogged during rains. This results in frequent traffic snarls between Mannurpet and the Padi grade separator.

“It is a similar situation from TI Miller to Ambattur Industrial Estate bus terminus. Heavy vehicles throw up much dust on this stretch,” says Swaminathan of Kallikuppam.

“As there the road does not afford enough space for me to overtake heavy vehicles, I have to slow down on the dusty road,” he said.

“Driving on this stretch during rainy days is a nightmare,” he pointed out.

Water-logging could be seen on both sides of the road near Mannurpet and near Ambattur Industrial Estate bus terminus, which reduces the road width to a bare minimum.

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa informed the Assembly in April this year, that the narrow CTH Road would be developed into a six-lane highway at a cost of Rs.168 crore, of which Rs. 98 crore would go into the its first phase, which involves creating a four-lane road.

However, traders here said that the proposed six-lane would affect them as well as residents living there for years.

“We appealed to the Chief Minister to limit the road widening to four-lane as it is more than enough and will not affect any section of the people,” one of the traders said.

The Highways Department expedited the demarcation of boundaries for the project, which envisages widening a 22-km stretch of the road between Padi and Thiruninravur into a four lane

The road’s present width of 10-12 metres will be widened to 20 metres.

Sources in the Highways Department said they have completed the demarcation process, between Padi and Thirunindravur and estimates have already been prepared.

Tenders are expected to be floated in August. “Already, most of the 22-km stretch is 100 feet wide.

The four-lane work will be taken up in the first phase using the existing road space and six-lane work will be carried out after land acquisition is completed,” an official said. Regarding clearing of encroachments, the process could be carried out with the coordination of Revenue and Police officials, he reiterated.

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