CHENNAI: In what may come as a relief to pedestrians, the city corporation has proposed to construct foot overbridges with escalators at nine locations in the city.
The civic body will go for a feasibility study and if given go-ahead signal, is expected to take up construction at an estimated cost of Rs 50 crore from the State Government’s Capital Grant Fund.
The move is aimed at easing pedestrian traffic at important intersections, said, corporation officials.
“It is part of providing a sustainable traffic management system in the city. We have floated a tender for consultants to check the feasibility,” said a corporation official.
The proposed areas for the foot overbridges are Luz Church road near Luz Corner, LB road near Adyar depot, Sardar Patel Salai near Anna University, Arcot road near Forum Vijaya Mall, Anna Nagar 2nd and 3rd avenues near Iyyappan temple and C Kandaswami Naidu College respectively, Purasawalkam high road near Kelly’s bus stop, Harrington road near MCC school and Perambur railway station.
“Crossing the road to or from the Forum Mall is a challenge since it is a perpetually busy road. Especially during the evenings, I usually navigate my way when the vehicles stop briefly due to the traffic which is risky,” said Sandhya Krishnakumar, an IT professional in the city.
TNIE had reported earlier of the narrow footpath on Sardar Patel Road near the Central Leather Research Institute (CLRI) that has for a long time now, been giving pedestrians a tough time.
However, the existing foot overbridges in some parts of the city are rarely used despite being situated on busy stretches.
“Outside the Indira Nagar MRTS, pedestrians, mostly students jump over the median although there is a foot overbridge barely a few metres away,” said Ganesh Seetharaman, a regular commuter in the stretch.
Similarly, the city traffic police personnel are often found helping pedestrians cross the road near the Saidapet court despite the availability of a foot overbridge.
Aswathy Dilip, senior programme manager at The Institute for Transportation and Development Policy said that in a city, in general, around 70-80 per cent of the pedestrians choose to cross at the grades even with a foot overbridge present.
Foot overbridges work under specific conditions. Most often, the ones that are used frequently are those that are connected directly from Metro, MRTS or suburban railway stations- when it is directly connected to their destinations on one side. Otherwise, many would prefer to cross the road,” she added.
“For women, security is also an issue that sometimes keeps them from using the bridges, especially at nights. With advertising hoardings blocking the view, if someone blocks the two narrow exit points on either ends, they may be trapped in the middle,” she said.
State fund to be used
The civic body will go for a feasibility study and if given go-ahead signal, is expected to take up construction at an estimated cost of `50 crore from the State’s Capital Grant Fund. The move is aimed at easing pedestrian traffic at important intersections