Will replace two level crossings near the railway station
The Highways Department and Southern Railway will construct a road overbridge and a pedestrian subway to replace two level crossings near the Perungalathur railway station.
The works will be executed under the Chennai Metropolitan Development Project of the department. The department estimates its contribution to the project cost to be around Rs.72 crore.
Officials of the Highways Department said the facilities had been necessitated as they faced a unique problem at Perungalathur railway station. The level crossings (LCs No. 32 and 33) were on either side of the station and just a few metres away from the platform.
Commuters faced problems when Southern Railway started operating 12-car train services between Chennai Beach-Tirumalpur via Tambaram and Chengalpattu. The platform of Perungalathur railway station was not long enough to accommodate all the 12 compartments. The first three compartments would halt outside the platform and commuters can be seen jumping out of the compartments at the station.
A road overbridge would replace the LC-32 and had been aligned with the proposed Rs.50 crore Eastern Bypass project of the Highways Department. The Eastern Bypass would connect Velachery Main Road at Rajakilpakkam and GST Road near the Perungalathur station. The road overbridge would have ramps descending on Eastern Bypass, officials said.
A pedestrian subway would be built to replace LC-33 and once completed, the level crossings could be closed down and the platforms extended, a Southern Railway engineer said.
He pointed out that if they had to extend the platform to accommodate all the compartments of a 12-car electric train, they had no other option but to close down one of the two level crossings. Owing to protests by residents of Perungalathur Town Panchayat on the one side and Peerkankaranai Town Panchayat on the other, against the closure of the level crossings, they were unable to go ahead with the projects, the engineer added.
Highways officials said civil works were expected to begin in four months time. Once completed, the projects would bring immense benefit to Perungalathur.