N. Anand and T.S. Shankar

CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation (TIDCO) has proposed an exclusive Information Technology Investment Region (ITIR) corridor encompassing Chennai, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts.

The project aims at decongesting the existing Information Technology corridor and the GST road.

TIDCO has forwarded a detailed proposal to the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) for help in setting up the ITIR to ensure integrated grid development of software and hardware industries in and around Chennai and reduce the burden on Chennai metro area.

Mooted by the Centre in April, the ITIR takes advantage of the next wave of growth in IT/ITES, BPO and electronics hardware.

It will be a specifically notified zone that will include IT/BPOs, electronics hardware manufacturing units, public utilities, residential areas, social infrastructure and administrative units, according to a senior TIDCO official.

Spread over 1,600 sq. km, the ITIR is much larger than an IT-SEZ. It is designed for development of road, rail and air connectivity. Infrastructure will be created in the ITIR at a cost of Rs.17,750 crore, including Rs.3,000 crore for the Chennai airport. When completed, it will enable Tamil Nadu to emerge as the single largest hub for the IT sector in India.

The road development work covers Rajiv Gandhi Salai (IT Corridor connecting Madhya Kailash with Mamallapuram in two phases), Mamallapuram-

Tirukazhukundaram-Chengalpattu and Kancheepuram on the south and NH-4 (Chennai-Bangalore) from Kancheepuram to Chennai on the north/northwest. Preliminary estimates indicate that the cost of developing at least 10 roads into 4-lane highways will be Rs.1,500 crore.

MRTS extension

The detailed TIDCO report has envisaged extension of the existing Mass Rapid Transport System (MRTS) railway line from Tiruvanmiyur to Mamallapuram, along Rajiv Gandhi Salai on the Buckingham canal route for about 50 km. A new railway line has also been proposed from Anna Nagar to Kancheepuram, passing through Poonamallee and Sriperumbudur for about 75 km. The cost of the above two rail links is estimated at Rs.1,250 crore.

New townships

“We have suggested creation of three new townships to support industrial and commercial developments in addition to existing infrastructure in and around Chennai, its suburbs and in major towns. Two of these townships can be located in the area flanked by NH-4 and NH-45 and the third between NH-45 and Rajiv Gandhi Salai. Each township should have 15,000 dwelling units and might require investment of about Rs.4,000 crore including cost of utilities, infrastructure, but excluding cost of water/power supply sources,” a senior TIDCO official said.