Today's Paper

IT corridor road project moving at snail's pace

CHENNAI, NOV. 29. The Chennai city traffic police may have come up with an "ad hoc" solution to decongest the Information Technology corridor on Old Mamallapuram Road. But six-laning of the road with an additional service road is likely to take off only from January 1, 2005, when litigation-free land is made available to the Tamil Nadu Road Development Company (TNRDC).

While the State Government is attaching importance to the Rs. 200-crore proposal projecting it as the "model road", commuters, mostly software professionals, are expressing concern over the delay in widening and strengthening the 22-km stretch from the Madhya Kailash traffic junction to Siruseri.

Though the three-km stretch from Madhya Kailash to the TIDEL Park is free of encroachments, TNRDC authorities are not willing to start the project, as they will have to pay heavy compensation to contractors if they do not make available encroachment-free land for implementing it.

Problems too many

The TNRDC has chalked out a plan to start work on both ends of the road and keep the Madhya Kailash-TIDEL Park stretch as the final phase, sources told The Hindu. The delay was caused by the need to relocate temples, mosques and churches on this carriageway. Permanent and semi-permanent fixtures would have to be removed.

The TNRDC is grappling with the problem of over 120 inter-connecting roads, apart from the major link road from the Sholinganallur junction on Old Mamallapuram Road towards East Coast Road. Laying underground ducts to accommodate power cables and water pipes has also contributed to the delay.

Apart from overbridges at intervals on the IT corridor, the six-lane carriageway will have landscaped medians. A long-term move of acquiring land near the Madhya Kailash temple to facilitate left-turn at this junction, besides shifting a Central school behind to provide for an elevated ramp, has been proposed.

In spite of non-availability of a good motorable road from Madhya Kailash to Siruseri, the IT corridor is abuzz with top companies putting up huge establishments. "We have more than 22,000 vehicles passing this stretch during peak hour and the number is going to swell with more companies chalking out expansion plans," user-agency sources said.

With a cluster of schools there and with Taramani declared an "institutional area," the State Government has to provide a push to the IT corridor. "A high-power committee headed by the Development Commissioner and the Finance Secretary is closely monitoring the project," the sources said.

The top 10 software companies are expanding and want the IT corridor road project put on fast track mode.

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