Pedestrian safety is compromised because of one-way traffic on the roads around Ashok Pillar in Ashok Nagar, say road users. The thoroughfares in question are Jawaharlal Nehru Main Road, Anna Main Road and 11th Main Road. These roads witness an almost continuous movement of vehicles. At this junction, pedestrians have to run to cross the road. Pedestrians usually try to cross the road in small groups. Some walk up to the police training college traffic signal and cross the road.
“During rush hour, motorists drive at breakneck speed with no concern for pedestrians. The one-way route around Ashok Pillar was introduced many years ago to facilitate Metro Rail work. However, the junction is unsafe for walkers,” says K. Vijayalakshmi, a resident of Ashok Nagar.
Motorists say that unlike the stretch around the police training college, which is narrow, most stretches around Ashok Pillar are much wider. As a result, once the traffic signal at the police training college goes green, motorists speed to make the most of the empty stretch (after Ashok Pillar).
And then, there are motorists coming from Nesapakkam those Anna Main Road and taking a right turn at Ashok Pillar.
With motorists from both sides competing for the road space after Ashok Pillar, pedestrians have to wait for long time before they could cross the stretch safely.
A few months ago, speed breakers were laid around Ashok Pillar especially towards Ekkathuthangal. Nevertheless, motorists tend to drive at a high speed once they cross the police training college traffic signal.
It is a busy junction as it connects K.K. Nagar, Ekkatuthangal, Nesapakkam, West Mambalam and Vadapalani. At night, many goods-laden lorries also use the junction.
“Steps will be taken to deploy traffic police personnel at least during rush hour to ensure safe crossing of pedestrians around Ashok Pillar,” say police sources.