Haphazard parking continues to be rampant in Chennai's T. Nagar

All rules ignored:  Motorcycles parked in the bicycle docking stand at the pedestrian plaza in T. Nagar.

All rules ignored: Motorcycles parked in the bicycle docking stand at the pedestrian plaza in T. Nagar.

It is a year since the multi-level car parking was commissioned at Pondy Bazaar in T. Nagar. But its aim of eliminating haphazard parking on Thyagaraya Road and facilitating easy movement of pedestrians is yet to be achieved.

People continue to park along the kerb; two-wheelers are often parked on the pedestrian plaza. In front of some shops, especially trendy shops and eateries, across the multi-level car parking, three rows of scooters and motorbikes occupy the precious walking space.

The multi-level car parking charges ₹20 an hour for cars and ₹5 for two-wheelers. “There is no drive to create awareness of the parking lot among people,” said Prakash Galada, owner of Galada Agencies, a shop on Thyagaraya Road.

“People are not aware that their car or motorcycle will be safe in the parking lot, and there will be no theft of or scratch to their vehicles. Every day, 20% of the visitors are new and at weekends, the proportion goes up to 50%. These people do not know how to enter the multi-level car parking,” he said.

The shop owners, Greater Chennai Corporation officials and the multi-level car parking contractor had discussions on reducing the cost of parking for shop assistants. But nothing has emerged. As a result, those using vehicles tend to park on the by-lanes. “I hadn’t walked at Pondy Bazaar until now.

It was pleasant to walk on the pedestrian plaza as it is a long unbroken stretch. In other places, such as Usman Road, sometimes we have to get off the footpath,” said M. Ganesh, a Velachery resident, who visits his relatives in T. Nagar.

On-street parking has also left lanes adjacent to the plaza difficult to navigate. The elderly are unable to use the footpath. “I cannot walk on these roads as I am afraid of falling,” said a 79-year-old woman visiting her daughter in. Nagar.

She routinely walked on the lanes off the plaza but gave up after the monsoon as the roads are damaged and uneven. Until before the monsoon, she could walk on the road, though the footpaths were occupied.

Lack of maintenance of the footpath, along with encroachment by vehicles, has left the bicycle docking slot a parking spot for autorickshaws on Sivagnanam Street. Across the road, the wide footpath is occupied by motorcycles and scooters.

However, shop owners are quick to appreciate some facilities. The rest room across Thanikachalam Road, near the Aavin parlour, has been maintained well, they say. “It would help to have more such facilities for people on the other end of the road and visitors,” Mr. Galada said.

There is no relief yet from the hawker menace on Sivaprakasam Street or Masilamani Street. A ‘no hawker zone’ sign board went missing a few days after it was installed. The hawkers have taken over the entire stretch, and shops along the southern end of the road have occupied the footpath. A hospital uses the footpath as a car parking lot.

Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Oct 6, 2022 11:45:48 pm |