Work on Rs. 15.75-crore Monegar Choultry subway will be completed in a month

The Monegar Choultry vehicular subway, work on which began nearly five years ago, is likely to be completed in a month.

Curing of the cement concrete road is on at the Rs. 15.75-crore project in north Chennai. The water is being made to stand to cure the concrete, a process that will take another two weeks. The work will bring great relief to residents of North Chennai who have been looking forward to the relief it would bring from traffic tangles.

“Some very minor works including laying of 70 m of service road and 45 m of top slab covering the stormwater drains are to be completed. These works are expected to be over in a month’s time and the facility will be ready for opening,” said a source in the Chennai Corporation, which began constructing the subway in April 2008 in association with Southern Railway.

Already, pedestrians in the area that is in the vicinity of Stanley Hospital and MC Road clothes wholesale and retail market, are wading through the water to reach their destination on either side of the 2.6 km-long Monegar Choultry Road, which connects Old Jail Road and Gollavar Agraharam Road in Old Washermenpet. “They should take the service lanes, which are completed and take the staircase instead of walking through the water,” said an official.

The four 600-m-long service lanes and the 359-m-long subway have cement concrete surfaces which will ensure greater longevity. “Otherwise, they will get spoilt every monsoon. The move will also prevent water seepage,” explained an engineer with the Corporation.

The civic body had set several deadlines for completion of the work. The work order was issued in January 2008 and work began in April that year. The central portion of the subway was built by the Railways and the approaches by the Chennai Corporation. In February 2011, the Corporation set a deadline of April 2011, which was later pushed to July. The Railways completed its work only in January this year after which the civic body speeded up work on stormwater drains and service lanes.

K. Saravanakumar, who works in Burma Bazaar and lives on Manikandan Street that is perpendicular to Monegar Choultry Road, said his commute from work would come down by nearly two kilometres. “We have been waiting since 2008 for the work to be completed. We hope the corporation will stick to its present deadline,” he said.

J.A. Nemichand of Ullaramman Koil Street said that once the subway is opened for traffic, policemen should be appointed for traffic regulation on either side. “Signals should also be installed. This is a very busy area and a lot of pedestrian movement takes place. Metro Rail work is proceeding on the road leading from Mint to Broadway, which makes it all the more necessary to have traffic regulation,” he added.

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