The Madras High Court on Tuesday refused to interfere in the decision to build a multi-level parking lot on Bashyam Road at T.Nagar. This clears the ways for the Chennai Corporation to construct the facility. The Court said that material before it indicated that Panagal Park (by the side of the road) would not be encroached or any part of the park used for the facility.

The First Bench comprising the Chief Justice M.Y. Eqbal and Justice T.S. Sivagnanam was dismissing a public interest litigation petition seeking a direction to the authorities to take action on the petitioner’s representation of November last year and ensure that public could move freely into the park without any difficulty.

The petitioner, social activist K.R. Ramaswamy alias ‘Traffic’ Ramaswamy, said the entrance to the park would be blocked if the parking facility was allowed on Bashyam Road. Because of the facility, the feeder road would be closed thereby preventing free vehicular movement around the park. Hence, the proposal should be withdrawn.

The Bench said that from a perusal of the counter affidavit, it was seen that the proposed structure is to be constructed on a vacant land on Bashyam Road in front of the park and not by closing the road.

Messrs. Justices Eqbal and Sivagnanam said from the final feasibility report, it could be seen that the concept of multi-level car parking was to maximise parking capacity by utilising vertical space, rather than expand horizontally. It is to be designed in such a manner that it would automatically move the vehicles by lift, which then would transfer the vehicle to the proper floor automatically. Such a facility had been established by the New Delhi Municipal Council, Navi Mumbai, Brihanmumbai, Kolkata, Pune and Ahmedabad Corporations, Bangalore Mahanagar Palike and the Hyderabad Urban Development Authority. The park would be available for the public as was existing now.

In that view of the matter, the Bench said, it did not propose to interfere in the civic body’s decision to establish the parking facility. The court placed on record the Chennai Corporation’s submissions. No further orders were required, it said.

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