Chennai: T S Natarajan, a resident of Villivakkam and employee at a government office in Chepauk, reaches office late several times. Several other residents of the neighbourhood like him were also not to blame, for the fault was not theirs.
The local train they board at locales like Villivakkam which fall under the western part of this city often reach Central Railway Station (Moore Market Complex-MMC) late and from there, they take a MTC bus or an auto for their offices in other places.
The reason behind the late arrival is because all these trains pass through Basin Bridge station, a busy intersection.
Lack of enough lines at Basin Bridge station results in prioritisation, under which some trains are made to wait like the local train taken by residents like Natarajan who are made to wait at Basin Bridge.
But now such waits could be a thing of the past for passengers.
This is because the project to commission the 5th and 6th lines at Basin Bridge has entered its final phase. Once completed, these two lines would end the waiting time at Basin Bridge.
Southern Railways commenced the final phase of the 5th and 6th line between MMC and Basin Bridge junction that will provide separate corridor for EMU trains towards Arakkonam to ensure uninterrupted movement of suburban trains thereby reducing commuting time.
"If our train happens to be the waiting one under the prioritisation, then reaching Central station is delayed," said S Prasad, another resident from Villivakkam.
"If this work witnesses completion, neighbourhood residents like us would return to travelling by train," said Muthu Mariappan, a resident of Srinivasa Nagar.
While residents of the locality like Natarajan still continue travelling on local train, people like Mariappan have stopped taking the EMUs fearing delays at Basin Bridge.
"We know that though the train travel is comfortable, we had to stop using it," he said and added, "these delays make people like me to stop travelling by train and opt to use two-wheelers, cars or buses. But once the project is completed, people like us could go back to local trains."
Also, work on extending the platform at local stations in the western corridor including Villivakkam is likely to bring cheer to commuters. This would help in operating 12-car rakes.