The construction of an automatic multi-level parking lot in one of the city’s most favoured shopping localities – and also one of the most crowded, T. Nagar, got a boost with the State government approving of the proposal.

The parking lot will come up on Bashyam Road near Panagal Park, and will be able to accommodate 500 cars and 900 motorcycles at a time.

This, according to shoppers and shop owners in the area, will help reduce congestion significantly.

 The State government has granted permission to the Chennai Corporation’s proposal to construct the facility on a ‘design, build, operate and transfer’ basis at a cost of Rs. 25 crore. It has also agreed to provide Rs. 5 crore from the Tamil Nadu Infrastructure Development Fund.

 The lot will come up on a 1,600 sq. mt. plot of land available on Bashyam Road. A study conducted by real estate services firm Jones Lang Lasalle a few years ago, had suggested that the lot be built entirely underground so that pedestrian traffic on the surface is not affected.

 “Entries and exits were suggested on G. N. Chetty Road, Doraisamy Road and Venkatnarayana Road. This would have helped keep traffic at the entry and exit points smooth. However, that proposal was changed by the Corporation due to several civic difficulties,” said a planner, who was involved in the study initially.

The study had also suggested that the T. Nagar bus terminus be shifted to either Valluvar Kottam or Saidapet.

 LKS Syed Ahamed, chairman of LKS Gold House in T. Nagar, who welcomed the announcement, said, “Perhaps the government could also think about a separate parking lot for vehicles of shop employees as their vehicles arrive daily. It could come up at the T. Nagar bus terminus.”

 An official explained that the design for the facility would be prepared by the contractor. The Corporation will call for bids shortly, and the tendering process is likely to take six months. “Construction will take 18-24 months,” he said.

 Meanwhile, the city’s first multi-level parking lot, which is coming up at Wallace Garden will take another six months to be completed. Work on the Rs. 30-crore facility began in late 2010 after the Corporation handed over the land to concessionaires.2010. after the Corporation

The civic body had earlier fixed a deadline of June this year for completion of the project, which is being constructed by a consortium formed by Marg Limited and Apollo Hospitals. December is the new deadline for the project.

 Another project, which was to take off last year — the construction of a multi-level parking lot at the Broadway bus terminus — has been put on hold. “Chennai Metro Rail has taken a portion of the space temporarily. The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority had also suggested some changes to the original designs proposed by the contractor so there will be some re-designing. Since a Metro station is coming up near the terminus. So we want to study the changes in traffic flow and re-design the Rs. 40-crore facility accordingly,” said an official.

 The fourth project, which has remained on paper for want of takers, is the proposal for a two-wheeler parking facility in Flower Bazaar. “A 2008 study had suggested that a parking lot was required in the Parry’s Corner area. However, much water has flown under the bridge and a lot of changes have taken place in the area since then,” said a planner. 

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