Chennai

Extra track to boost suburban train services beyond Tambaram

Segmented process: The work on the 30-km third line from Tambaram to Chengalpattu has been carried out in three phases.  

Thousands of residents beyond Tambaram are set to get affordable and dependable public transport in the form of suburban train services by this year-end. Southern Railway will complete the third line between Tambaram and Chengalpattu by August-end.

The project, similar to the fifth and sixth lines developed near the Moore Market suburban complex, will pave the way for putting express trains and suburban trains on dedicated lines, thus facilitating the speedy movement of express trains and the operation of more suburban trains in the fast-developing residential localities beyond Tambaram.

A. Elumalai, Public Relations Officer of Southern Railway’s Chennai Division, said the work on the 30-km third line from Tambaram to Chengalpattu was carried out in three phases. Two phases covering nearly 20 km have been completed.

The work on 10 km from Guduvanchery to Tambaram is progressing well, and will be completed by this month-end. Once the new track is commissioned and the Commissioner of Railway Safety inspects it and gives the green signal for train operation, the third line will be opened.

Mr. Elumalai said the Commissioner of Railway Safety had completed the inspection of the new tracks in the Guduvanchery-Singaperumal Koil and Singaperumal Koil-Chengalpattu sections on March 3 this year and September 29 last year. The cost of the third line was ₹60.54 crore.

The need for suburban train services arises from the boom in the housing sector beyond Tambaram (though it remains the transport hub). The presence of several information technology companies, factories and Mahindra World City means affordable public transport is required.

J. Ranganathan, secretary, Kancheepuram-Chennai Rail Commuters’ Association, said the third line would help in mass movement of thousands of commuters and easing congestion at the Tambaram station, which was running to its capacity. The third line would also help to make Chengalpattu a railway terminal from where some long-distance trains can be operated, as it is being done in Tambaram, thus giving a breathing space to the Egmore station from where almost all the long-distance trains bound for the south parts of Tamil Nadu are being operated.

Sensing the need for improving amenities because of the likely increase in passengers with the operation of more suburban and long-distance services, Southern Railway has fitted the Chengalpattu station with modern amenities such as a multi-level two-wheeler parking lot, new street lights and battery-operated cars at the station.

The station has recently commissioned an overhead equipment depot, an electronic interlocking system and a train protection and warning system.

The third line is part of the doubling, along with electrification, from Chengalpattu to Villupuram (103 km). The cost was initially pegged at ₹132 crore.

However, it was increased to accommodate modifications, and an outlay of ₹340 crore was fixed.

The Commercial Department of Southern Railway has put the number of commuters in the Chengalpattu-Tambaram section at 50,000. But it expects the number to double once more suburban services are operated.


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Printable version | Oct 25, 2021 10:54:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/extra-track-to-boost-suburban-train-services-beyond-tambaram/article36090570.ece

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