CHENNAI: If all goes according to plan, work on the 15.3-kilometre Metro rail stretch from the airport to Kilambakkam may begin this year, while a detailed feasibility report is underway for the Velachery-Tambaram stretch.
CMRL officials said that work on the Detailed Project Report is in its final stages and would be completed soon. Recently, the Metro also held field surveys on this stretch.
"The 15-km stretch connects a lot of densely populated areas and the line would be an elevated stretch on top of the GST road," said officials, pointing out that since the roads are already wide and the stretch being elevated, work may be completed sooner than the other lines in the city.
The stretch would have 13 stations and will connect key localities such as Chromepet, MEPZ, Tambaram and Vandalur.
In Kilambakkam, a new bus terminus is also proposed and could open soon.
In the 15 km stretch between Velachery and Tambaram, the Metro has planned to build a light rail, which will weigh less than the current trains. Officials said that the light rail project has been proposed as the Metro may travel through areas where there is less road space.
Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam on Tuesday in the state budget announced that a Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the Airport-Kilambakkam line and a Detailed Feasibility Report (DFR) for the Tambaram to Velachery line was underway.
If both of these stretches are complete, commuters from the Chennai suburbs would have a faster and more comfortable travel to the city.
Activist Dhayanand Krishnan, who has filed multiple petitions and RTIs to the Metro, for expansion of the two Metro lines, said once it is complete, it would benefit a lot of residents who live in the densely populated suburbs.
"People here are dependent hugely on public transport whether to commute to a college or hospital. I had filed petitions in 2018 and it is good to see the Metro line is on the way to become a reality," he said.
He added that the Metro must consider integrating the Tambaram to Velachery line with the existing Electric Multiple Unit line as it would provide further integration with other forms of public transport.