Concessionaire begins clearing work site on Spurtank Road

Work to construct the 19-km-long Chennai Port-Maduravoyal elevated expressway resumed on Monday.

The concessionaire, Soma Enterprises Ltd., began clearing the work site at Spurtank Road in Chetpet. This followed a Madras High Court order giving the go-ahead for the project, which had been put on hold by an order of the Public Works Department.

National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) chief general manager (technical) and regional officer V. Chinna Reddy said the Rs. 1,815-crore project would take another two years to be completed. “The concessionaire has been instructed to mobilise men and materials and speed up the work. Till the work was stopped in 2012, we were able to complete only 15 per cent of the civil works. The third party consultant to oversee the works has also been asked to ensure that works progress on time,” he said.

NHAI sources said it was waiting for the State to hand over the remaining land required for the project and to clear encroachments along the Cooum river. “As per the assurance given to the High Court, we will ensure that there is no hindrance to the water flow in the Cooum during and after construction.”

On completion, the expressway will take off from gate 10 of the Chennai Port and end on Chennai-Bangalore Highway (NH 4). It will have two entry ramps on Sivananda Salai and College Road, and two exit ramps on Kamarajar Salai and Spurtank Road.

R. Sivanandam, a resident of Nerkundram, expressed a hope that the work would indeed be speeded up. “Even though it might take just four hours for someone to drive down from Bangalore, it takes over an hour and half to reach Parry’s Corner due to traffic. This highway will help reduce congestion on Poonamallee High Road,” he said.