Staff Reporter

Facilitates faster commuting between Aminjikarai and Chetpet Facilitates faster commuting between Aminjikarai and Chetpet

CHENNAI: The Harrington Road subway, inaugurated on Saturday, is likely to turn busy soon as vehicle-users can commute faster between Aminjikarai and Chetpet using this subway.

The Union Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Dayanidhi Maran, declared open the vehicular subway that connects McNichols Road, EVR Periyar Salai and Harrington Road. The Rs. 9-crore project was a joint effort of the Railways and the Chennai Corporation. The Corporation's share of expenditure was Rs. 5.79 crore.

Traffic on the route picked up after noon on Saturday when the inaugural function got over. At present, the 320 metre long subway has two-way traffic but new regulations may be put in place if there is congestion. The subway is only 7.5 metres wide (including pedestrian footpaths) and, hence, two-way traffic could cause bottlenecks.

When contacted, a senior traffic police officer said that vehicle movement in the stretch would be monitored. Traffic regulation arrangements would be made according to the requirement, he said.

Pedestrian safety

The new subway also has footpaths for pedestrians on both sides. For safety reasons, the footpaths are raised and separated from the road for vehicles. A flight of stairs on either side, connected by a small overhead bridge, allows pedestrians to cross the subway.

During the rains, stagnant water is diverted to two wells in the subway.

The project was started on April 8, 2005, almost three years after it was given the official sanction in September 2002.

The tender process was delayed as bidders felt the government's project estimates were not in keeping with the high costs of steel and concrete.

Union Minister of State for Railways R. Velu, the Electricity Minister Arcot N. Veerasamy, the Local Administration Minister M.K. Stalin, Deputy Mayor R. Thiagarajan and the Corporation Commissioner M.P. Vijayakumar participated in the inauguration.