Chennai Metro Rail (CMRL) is set to modernise at least 10 Metropolitan Transport Corporation (Chennai) Ltd (MTC) bus terminus-cum-depots in both the city and suburbs, with some strategically positioned near the upcoming phase-2 metro stations.
Locations for modernisation include Anna Nagar West, KK Nagar, Mandaveli, Adyar, Villivakkam, Thiruvottiyur, Poonamallee, Kilkattalai, Vadapalani, and potentially Aynavaram.
Recently, the agency initiated the process of selecting consultants through a bidding process to prepare a detailed project report for the modernisation of the bus depot cum terminus at Anna Nagar West and KK Nagar.
Metro rail officials stated that the commercial development of MTC bus stands aligns with the multimodal integration plan, aiming to integrate bus facilities with phase-2 metro stations, reports Times Of India.
The revitalisation of these terminuses is expected to encourage more commuters to utilise both MTC and metro services, generating non-ticketing revenue for both MTC and CMRL.
L Girirajan, the CMRL spokesperson, outlined the integration plan, stating, “Ten bus depots will be integrated with corridor-3, 4, and 5 of phase-2. We have taken up terminuses in Anna Nagar West and KK Nagar for development in the first phase. Based on requirements, development of another bus terminus may be taken up in time.”
The outdated asbestos-roofed sheds and dimly lit bus bays in MTC depots may soon be replaced by modern parking slots, well-designed bus bays, retail outlets, lounge areas, and other amenities.
While discussions have taken place with MTC regarding terminuses in Mandaveli, Adyar, and Villivakkam, finalisation is pending. A detailed feasibility report will be prepared for each terminus, determining funding sources, with partial funding potentially coming from the state government and the remainder through loans.
An MTC official noted their financial constraints for redeveloping the terminuses, prompting collaboration with CMRL.
In October 2022, CMRL initiated work on designing and constructing a multimodal facility complex at the Broadway bus stand, including features like bus bays, commercial spaces, and parking areas on a 4.42-acre plot.
Experts emphasise the need for CMRL to enhance facilities such as footpaths, bus stands, and parking lots within a 500-m radius of each station to facilitate easy access for commuters.
Former CMRL director R Ramanathan suggested that improving the surrounding areas could discourage the use of private vehicles, emphasising the importance of feeder services for first and last-mile connectivity.
Chennai Metro Phase-2
Phase-2 expansion has been planned for a length of 118.9 km network, with 128 number of stations. It consists of three corridors. Corridor-3 from Madhavaram to SIPCOT (45.8 km), Corridor-4 from Lighthouse to Poonamalle Bypass (26.1 km), Corridor-5 from Madhavaram to Sholinganallur (47 km).