Suitable plots will be identified for the development of parking lots and markets for vendors

The Chennai Corporation on Monday initiated the mapping of unsurveyed land near Marina beach to create civic infrastructure including parking facilities and markets for vendors. At a meeting on Monday, the civic body decided to make use of this land as part of a makeover for the beach.

The proposed facilities will be constructed after adhering to all norms pertaining to coastal regulation zones.

However, since many parcels of land have been handed over to agencies such as the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board and the Tamil Nadu Housing Board, the civic body will survey what is left and identify suitable plots for development.

The Corporation has already prepared a detailed project report for the makeover of the southern part of the Marina, including the development of walkways, benches, a gallery, bicycle tracks, concrete roads, service trenches, rainwater trenches and streetlight fittings at an estimated cost of Rs. 40 crore for the 2.8 km stretch from the lighthouse to Foreshore Estate.

Though a few non-governmental organisations have protested the civic body’s move to create parking lots on the beach, a Corporation official said: “There will not be any encroachments on the sands of the beach.”

The relocation of illegal markets on the stretch has emerged as a huge hurdle to the proposed makeover.

Commissioning of a modern fish market on the stretch to provide alternative accommodation to vendors of the existing market on Marina Loop Road, the creation of a park near the mouth of the Cooum, and parking lots are among the projects proposed.

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