Chennai

Vehicle users misuse Pedestrian Plaza; residents unhappy

Two wheelers parked in front of an eatery at T. Nagar pedestrian plaza on Wendesday night. Photo

Two wheelers parked in front of an eatery at T. Nagar pedestrian plaza on Wendesday night. Photo   | Photo Credit: R. Sujatha

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Two wheeler users continue to misuse the footpath, especially near the numerous eateries on the stretch. The nuisance is higher along the stretches opposite Holy Angels’ School.

The Pondy Bazaar pedestrian plaza was opened exactly a month ago this day. It is a pleasure to walk without having to worry about tripping over broken footpaths. Residents of the area have turned it into a haven, jogging and walking the stretch during the early mornings.

But two wheeler users continue to misuse the footpath, especially near the numerous eateries on the stretch. The nuisance is higher along the stretches opposite Holy Angels’ School. An upmarket eatery, KFC, has provided a ramp and sufficient parking space for at least 10 motorbikes. Yet, it is normal to see at least half a dozen motorcycles parked on the footpath instead of the allotted parking slot.

Car owners tend to park on the ramp leading to Big Bazaar. Further down the road, past the petrol station, two-wheeler users ride on the footpath regularly. On Thursday morning, at least half a dozen vehicles were parked on the footpath, outside Balaji Bhavan, a much-frequented hotel.

A shopkeeper said once the shops opened for business the owners removed the vehicles. A flower vendor on Sivaprakasam Street said the misuse is highest when the police retire for the day in the night. “After that people ride on their bikes. Some people also spend the night here,” she said.

Nandakumar, an assistant at a hair dresser shop, says, “What is the point of all this development if they can’t build a toilet? People using this stretch have to request shops to provide them the facility. Not all are willing to allow them to use their toilets,” he said. Also, “The women who work in the shops now have to trek all the way up to the school for buses as this is now a one way stretch,” says the resident of Light House.

Sundararaman a resident of Mambalam High Road feels the heat of the changes: “Now that parking space has dwindled it is the residential areas around the place that have to bear the brunt. What smart city are we talking about,” he rues.

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 3:57:18 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/vehicle-users-misuse-pedestrian-plaza-residents-unhappy/article30284203.ece

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