Two bus depots/termini that are known for congestion and poor facilities are at T Nagar and Thiruvanmiyur . But it will not remain the same in the coming years. The feasibility study for setting up commercial complex in these two places is going on.

The Transport Department's policy note read out by V. Senthil Balaji in the Assembly on Monday mentions that the Metropolitan Transport Corporation Limited (MTC) would be implementing the project on a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode. The Tamil Nadu Urban Infrastructure Financial Services Limited's (TNUIFSL) help was sought by the MTC for appointing a consultant to conduct the study.

“The consultant is analysing whether the project is commercially viable and in which model the development should be made. Only after we get the report can we prepare documents and call for tenders to select the firm which will carry out the project on a PPP mode,” said a TNUIFSL source.

Sources said that though one of the plans is to have the bus depot on the ground floor and a commercial complex on the first floor, the final plan would be decided by the consultant. “The consultant will decide upon the model which will be commercially viable,” said the source.

According to the MTC website, there are a total of 25 depots and a fleet strength of 3,497 plying on 729 routes. Over 50 lakh passengers use the MTC services every day. However, passengers said that there is a need to improve infrastructure in both the bus stands.

K. Subramanian, who regularly uses the Thiruvanmiyur bus depot, said that toilet and flooring of the bus depot should be improved. He also stressed the need for a public address system to guide commuters.

S. Jegan, a commuter, said that similar problems persist in T. Nagar too. “Another problem here is the share-autorickshaw menace. Even that has to be sorted out. Otherwise, there is no point in improving the depots,” he said.

The State government also seems serious about implementing the monorail project. The Minister said selection of the bidder to carry out the project is under way. Work would be taken up in the three corridors initially and subsequently the fourth.

According to the Minister, land acquisition for the project is very minimal, and occupy less than a square meter space when columns are located on centre medians. They are easy to construct and have the advantage of serving interior areas too.

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Vivek NarayananJune 28, 2012

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