Festival shoppers run short of parking space

Vehicles parked in a ‘No Parking’ area on Madurai Road in Tiruchi on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: M. SRINATH

The absence of sufficient designated parking lots in commercial streets has forced vehicle users to park on the roadsides, leading to traffic snarls at various areas in the city.

With Deepavali just two weeks away, business streets such as NSB Road, Singarathope, Chinnakadai Street, Big Bazaar Street, Nandi Koil Street, Super Bazaar, Shastri Road and Karur Bypass Road are teeming with shoppers. They witnessed heavy crowds especially during the latter part of the week, giving a tough time to police.

While shoppers found it extremely difficult to find vacant places to park their vehicles, police personnel too struggled to regulate the flow of vehicles. As the police closed all important roads that led to busy commercial streets due to overcrowding, the shoppers were forced to park their cars on both sides of West Boulevard Road, Madurai Road, Old Goodshed Road and others. Many could find vacant spots only beyond Devar Hall on West Boulevard Road. The cars were parked on roads in at least two rows, thereby encroaching nearly one-third of the road space.

They had to walk for more than a km for shopping. The two-wheelers, who managed to sneak into the commercial streets, parked their vehicles at their will.

Though the crowds and the number of vehicles were less on Monday and Tuesday when compared to the weekend, there was no let up in traffic snarls at Main Guard Gate and Madurai Road. Overflowing of parking lots by a couple of textile showrooms also added to the traffic blockade. As the police closed the entry point at Teppakulam post office, vehicles had to take a circuitous route to travel on West Boulevard Road. Car owners were seen arguing with the police and private security personnel employed by textile showrooms for disallowing their vehicles.

“It is a nightmarish experience to find vacant spots to park vehicles. I spent about 30 minutes and had no option but to park on the ‘no parking zone’ on West Boulevard Road near Devar Hall,” says a shopper.

Many felt that the police and the Corporation should have foreseen the heavy crowds and the vehicles well in advance to set up temporary parking facilities.

R. Mutharasu, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Traffic, told The Hindu that arrangements had been made to set up temporary parking lots in the playgrounds of Holy Cross College Higher Secondary School and the Bishop Heber Higher Secondary School. The management of the schools had agreed to the plan. A two-wheeler parking had been created on Old Goodshed Road. No cars and two-wheelers were allowed on NSB Road, Chinnakadai Street and some parts of the Big Bazaar Street as they witnessed heavy crowds. Restricted vehicle entry was in force in Singarathope.

Mr. Mutharasu said t the traffic situation was being monitored from 7 a.m. to 11.30 p.m. on busy roads. About 150 traffic policemen had been engaged to ensure free flow of vehicles.

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2021 2:20:23 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/festival-shoppers-run-short-of-parking-space/article37075729.ece

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