Commuters using the Perungudi Railway Station of the Mass Rapid Transit System are happy that the Southern Railway has posted a parking contractor at the railway station.
The railway station, located on the perimeter of Velachery and Taramani, is normally avoided by commuters of several residential localities including Annai Indira Nagar, Park Avenue, Baby Nagar and Tansi Nagar, because of poor accessibility and the lack of a parking contractor at the cycle/two-wheeler parking stand.
About a month ago, the Southern Railway appointed a parking contractor at the railway station which has created confidence among the commuters to use the railway station.
While the Chennai Corporation formed a concrete road to provide connectivity to the railway station, still the lack of a parking contractor and theft of vehicles and spare parts discouraged commuters from using the station.
S. Kanakaraja, a resident of Annai Indira Nagar, Velachery, said: “Despite the Perungudi railway station being closer to our residential locality, the lack of a parking contractor was one of the main reasons for commuters with vehicles preferring to go to the Velachery railway station for safety reasons.” Now that a covered parking shed and contractor are available, commuters from the numerous nearby residential areas have started using the railway station.
Mr. Kanakaraja wanted the railway authorities and the Chennai Corporation to take steps to install street lights near the railway station so that more commuters would start using the MRTS facility. Several street lights near the station are dysfunctional, he said and wanted regular maintenance of these lights to be carried out by the railway authorities.
Another commuter, R. Murugavel, a resident of Baby Nagar, complained about poor visibility inside the parking shed due to lack of any sort of illumination. With most of the commuters coming only in the night, they are finding it difficult to identify and unlock their vehicles. He also pointed out that some times, cars are allowed to be parked inside the shed. As they occupy more space, two-wheelers have to be parked outside the shed, he added.
Jayapal, who manages the parking lot at the railway station, said that at present, more than 150 to 200 two-wheelers and cycles are being parked at the parking lot daily. He said: “Another shed has been proposed for big vehicles and once the shed is erected, we hope the Perungudi railway station will be busy like the Velachery railway station.”
At the parking space, Rs. 10 is charged for four hours for parking cars, Rs. four for two-wheelers and Rs. two for cycles. Mr. Jayapal said that monthly passes are also available for two-wheelers and cycles. The parking lot is available for rent during night for private buses and cars, he added
With safety ensured, more commuters are using the facility.