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Friday, Jan 30, 2004

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TN clears Rs 127.41-cr IT Expressway

Our Bureau

Chennai , Jan. 29

ALMOST a year after it was announced, the Tamil Nadu Government has approved the Rs 127.41-crore IT Expressway in Chennai - upgrading the existing road from Taramani to Siruseri and then on to Mahabalipuram.

The Taramani-Siruseri stretch is called the cyber corridor as a number of information technology companies have established software development centres there. The Tidel software park, built by a State Government agency, is also located on this stretch.

According to a State Government press release, the project will be executed by IT Expressway Ltd, a special purpose vehicle of Tamil Nadu Road Development Company Ltd. The Chief Minister, Ms J. Jayalalithaa, has given her approval for the project, according to the release.

In the first phase, the 22-km stretch of road from the Madhya Kailash junction to Siruseri, where the State Industries Promotion Corporation of Tamil Nadu is developing an IT park, will be improved. In the second phase, the 25-km stretch from Siruseri to the tourist town of Mahabalipuram will be upgraded. The work is expected to be completed before the year-end, according to the release.

The improved road will have a six-lane carriageway, a two-metre wide median, footpath on either side with storm water drains, service ducts for various kinds of cables and sign boards along the way.

It is learnt that the project will be executed on a public-private partnership basis. That is, the Government will chip in with its share of funds and the special purpose vehicle will mobilise funds from the market. It has not yet been decided whether motorists will be levied a toll for using the road. The options before the Government are to either levy a toll or provide funds to IT Expressway Ltd on an annual basis (annuity based tolling) to help it repay the loans it has taken.

Bids are to be invited for executing the project. An empowered committee has also been constituted to ensure that the project goes ahead smoothly and without any delays.

More Stories on : Infrastructure | Roadways | Tamil Nadu

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