Staff Reporter

Stretch between Velachery, St. Thomas Mount pending for years Stretch between Velachery, St. Thomas Mount pending for years

Traffic jams not eased due to non-completion of the 5 km stretch Once completed, it would remove traffic clogs at Kathipara, Madhya Kailash and Halda intersection on GST Road, on Sardar Patel Road To provide easier access between Chennai airport, Old Mamallapuram Road

TAMBARAM: It was a road project conceived nearly four decades ago to ease traffic congestion within the city. Today, Inner Ring Road (IRR), that connects the southern end of the metropolis with its northern fringes and bypasses the heart of the city, has been completed, but for a small segment of about five kilometres.

The 35-km-long road connects Tiruvanmiyur with Manali via Velachery, St. Thomas Mount, Vadapalani, Koyambedu and Padi. But the purpose behind the project, that of easing traffic congestion through the other arterial roads, is yet to be achieved due to a dead halt in completing the five km stretch.

The IRR has been categorised in three sectors: Southern sector (between Tiruvanmiyur and St. Thomas Mount, 9.5 km); Central sector (Kathipara and Padi, 18 km) and Northern sector (between Padi and Manali, 6 km). While the Northern and Central sectors have been completed, only 4.5 km of the Southern sector between Tiruvanmiyur and Velachery is over.

Ignored by Governments

The remaining distance of five km between Velachery and St. Thomas Mount has been pending. According to sources, Governments in the past did not execute the Southern sector completely in the 1990s, when rest of IRR was built.

Once this stretch is completed, it would go a long way in removing traffic clogs at Kathipara, Madhya Kailash and Halda intersection on GST Road and on Sardar Patel Road. Its early completion would also speed up projects on the Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) between Velachery and St. Thomas Mount, said officials. It would also provide easier connection between Chennai airport and the Old Mamallapuram Road.

As of now, the plan is to build roads on either side of the proposed MRTS from Velachery onwards. The road would pass through the densely populated areas of Ullagaram, Adambakkam and Alandur and join the M.K.N. Road near the Thillai Ganga Nagar subway, before terminating near the Officers' Training Academy, St. Thomas Mount. Acquiring land for the project would not only be a daunting task, but would also cost several crores, making it even more expensive than the road laying works.

Officials said administrative sanction was already received and that the process for calling tenders for carrying out the road laying works was on.