Construction of six minor bridges across canals and drains on service lanes along Tiruchi-Chennai Bypass Road is expected to be completed within the next 10 days.
Lack of continuity of service lanes along the city stretch of the bypass road has been posing a threat to travellers ever since the road was upgraded as a four-lane highway by National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). As the service lanes do not run across canals or drains, wrong side driving is rampant as motorists are forced to move to the main carriageway of the highway.
The problem has been acutely felt near Kumbakonathan Salai-Chennai Bypass Road intersection, Sanjeevi Nagar and Oyamari Road intersection. Often, motorists have to sneak in the wrong direction across the main carriageway at the spots, risking their lives and limbs against speeding traffic coming from the opposite direction.
There has been persistent demands from city residents for construction of minor bridges to link the service lanes. Construction of seven minor bridges across canals near Thiruvanaikovil, Sanjeevi Nagar and near Ariyamangalam road overbridge close to Palpannai and Senthaneerpuram was sanctioned a few years ago and the works began in mid-2019.
Work on six minor bridges is nearing completion and blacktopping will be done within a week to 10 days after which they will be opened for traffic, a NHAI official told The Hindu.
Construction of the bridges has come as a big relief to motorists. It will be a big relief for those who commute on the road. It is essential to enforce left side driving on the two-way service lanes from now on, said M. Sekaran, president, Federation of Consumer and Services Organisation, who had been lobbying for linking the service lanes.
Mr. Sekaran, who is also a member of the District Road Safety Council, says NHAI must complete linking of the service lane across the Uyyakondan near Senthaneerpuram on the western side too at the earliest.
Work on this side has been held up pending the shifting of drinking water pipelines of Tiruchi Corporation. The work will be executed here once the pipelines are shifted, the NHAI official said.