By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai, on October 30, 2010:
CHENNAI: With the vehicle population exploding by the day on the Ambattur Industrial Estate Road, it is the residents living in and around Collector Nagar who are among the worst hit.As a solution to the perennial problem, they have sought construction of two foot overbridges along the 3 km stretch.Pedestrians and school-going children from these areas literally run the risk of being hit by speeding vehicles while crossing the road near Collector Nagar junction and at DAV school junction.Ambattur Industrial Estate road, branching from Thirumangalam-Anna Nagar junction is one of the busiest in the area.Thousands of vehicles use the stretch almost round-the-clock to reach Ambattur or Avadi.Speaking to Express, S Venkatesan, secretary of the Elango Nagar Makkal Nala Mantram, an area near Officers' Colony, said, "At Collector Nagar junction, it is difficult for people to cross the road due to speeding vehicles.""Besides well known hospitals, the particular stretch has more than four big reputed schools and thousands of students from those schools use that stretch.""Since there is no foot overbridge here, they run the risk of being hit by speeding vehicles," Venkatesan said."We have already given many representations to the local MP and MLA but nothing has been done. Foot overbridge is urgently needed at this junction as many accidents occur daily," he added.V Rajagopal, president of the Anna Nagar Western Extension (Phase II) Residents Welfare Association concurred."We certainly need foot overbridges along the stretch. If not two, we need at least one at Collector Nagar junction where pedestrians are forced to negotiate speeding vehicles to cross the road.""Luckily, there have not been any fatal accidents in the recent past along the stretch, but a foot overbridge near the Collector Nagar junction has become a necessity for students and pedestrians," Rajagopal said.When contacted, senior state highways department officials said that they had received a representation from locals for a foot overbridge on the stretch. However, nothing had been finalised as yet, the officials said.