T.S. Shankar

Chief Minister will also launch Oragadam Industrial Park Road Development Scheme

CHENNAI: The six-lane main carriageway of the 20.1-km Rajiv Gandhi Salai from Madhya Kailash Temple to Siruseri will be dedicated by Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi at a function to be held on October 29.

Mr. Karunanidhi will also launch the Oragadam Industrial Park Road Development Scheme and inaugurate the 2.1-km link road connecting the Information Technology (IT) corridor and East Coast Road (ECR).

Though the IT expressway was to have been fully operationalised by March 2005, the road works ran into rough weather and suffered undue delay due to contractual problems and other issues, including shifting of service utility facilities and land acquisition. The work is being executed by the Tamil Nadu Road Development Company (TNRDC) by forming a special purpose vehicle, IT Expressway Limited.

While the six-lane main carriageway will be fully thrown open formally by the Chief Minister, work on the service road from the end of Milestone 1 to Siruseri and the duct-laying work for accommodating the service utility facilities would be taken up after monsoon.

The proposed tolling from the 12-lane main tolling plaza built at Perungudi is expected to commence only in December after giving advance notice to local residents and other road users through media and public notification. Exit toll plazas have been built at Siruseri and satellite plazas at Sholinganallur, Medavakkam and Thorapakkam. The total project cost, including land acquisition and rehabilitation, has been put at Rs.379 crore.

On-Board Units

A senior TNRDC official explained that once the actual date for toll collection is decided and notified, several options would be revealed. The TNRDC is planning to encourage users to opt for pre-paid On-Board Units (OBUs), where a sensor-readable small instrument is fixed on the vehicle and the tariff deducted automatically once the vehicle passes through the toll plaza.

Those vehicles with OBUs need not stop at the toll plaza. The other facility is pre-paid smart cards in various denomination in multiples of Rs.50.

Cash will also be accepted at the toll plaza.

The proposed tariff for a single journey for a three-wheeler has been fixed at Rs.6; for car and jeep, Rs.17; light commercial vehicle, Rs.28; bus, Rs.44; truck, Rs.66 and multi-axle vehicle, Rs.132.

The TNRDC official said Local Resident Pass would be soon distributed to bona fide residents for which a survey had been completed.