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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

the parakkum rail aka Mass Rapid Transit system (MRTS) - Chennai Beach to Velacherry

So soon, we will be commuting in Rajiv Gandhi Salai aka Old Mahabalipuram road (OMR)…………. From Triplicane, it is approx 20 km little +….  The traffic signal at Thiruvanmiyur Junction (old SRP tools) is almost half-way mark….  OMR begins at Madhya Kailash temple in Adyar and winds south till Mahabalipuram, ultimately merging with East Coast Road, the road to Pondy….this road is popularly IT corridor as it has many IT / ITES companies… it is State highway-49A – this is a toll road after Perungudi.

People are weighing various options….besides- share autos,  individual vehicles and scheduled vans, there are Metropolitan buses and …. Parakkum rail (not the full path though !) ~ it is Chennai Mass Rapid Transit System, a state-owned subsidiary of Indian Railways,  unique  elevated railway line in India.   The line runs for a distance of  19.34 km (12.02 mi) with 17 stations, from Beach to Velachery…… with plans to get extended to St Thomas Mount thereby getting linked to the existing Beach Tambaram EMU line.   The alignment from Chennai Beach to Park Town is along the existing broad-gauge suburban system (2.75 km (1.71 mi), surface); alignment from Park Town to Thirumayilai is along the Buckingham canal (6.21 km (3.86 mi), elevated) ~ further till Velacherry is also on elevated line.

The Mass Rapid Transit system (Parakkum rail) is not exactly overcrowded.  It has the following Stations (read the distance in Km within bracket from origin)…. Chennai Beach; Fort (1.7); Parktown (2.54); Chintadripet (3.43); Chepauk (5); Thiruvallikkeni (5.74); Lighthouse (6,95); yet to be opened Mudakagkani amman temple (7.925); Thirumayilai (8.66); Mandaveli (9.69); Greenways Road (11.02); Kotturpuram(11.892); Kasturba Nagar (12.824); Indira Nagar (13.796); Thiruvanmiyur (14.655); Taramani (16.57); Perungudi (17.713) and Velachery (19.34)

The train takes around 40 minutes to reach Velacherry from Beach… 30 minutes to reach Thiruvanmiyur… from Triplicane to Thiruvanmiyur, it is approx 16 minutes………….. though one cannot compare it with Delhi Metro either for the AC / tidy looks / maintenance or digital announcement s – the trains do have boards announcing the movement / destination etc., (not in all trains says my friend).  Here are the train timings from Triplicane towards Velacherry as found in the Triplicane station. The fare from  Triplicane to Velacherry is Rs.5/- only (one way).   On Sundays, trains run in lesser frequency..

The timing described is purely ‘run-time’ (the time train takes from one station to another)… one will have to factor the walk-in(g) time for reaching, waiting time, time to get out and reach the connecting mode ….and more… the access to the station at Triplicane is not good; poorly lit, has no good connectivity – people fear to walk in dusk and before dawn ….and there are negative factors too…

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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