At the Ambattur Railway Station, platform number two is being further extended to accommodate 24-car trains. Platform number three, which is meant for express and goods trains, is also being extended to 24-car capacity. The extension work which was chugging along is now being fast-tracked.
(It may be recalled that platforms one and two were earlier extended and later provided with amenities based on request from commuters.)
With the extension of these platforms to accommodate 24-car trains, commuters from the neighbourhood will be able to board long-distance trains, mainly those being operated to Tirupathi and Jolarpet. Now, commuters have to travel to Purachi Thalaivar MGR Central railway station to board these trains.
Extension of suburban platforms for long-distance trains is being carried out only in select railway stations, which including Perambur, Villivakkam and Ambattur. The work began last month.
Located between the Thirumullavoyal and Pattaravakkam railway stations, the Ambattur railway station is an important public transport facility for many workers at the Ambattur Industrial Estate and college students.
Besides, residents of Padi, Mannurpet, Karukku, Kallikuppam, Menambedu and Pattaravakkam board trains from the station to reach various places including Arakkonam, Avadi, Villivakkam, Perambur and Chennai Central.
For commuters from Ambattur, Pattaravakkam and adjoining areas, it takes less than ten minutes to reach Rail Loco Works in Perambur. In contrast, by CTH Road, it takes them at least 45 minutes to reach this destination. “The extension of the platforms for long-distance trains, especially Tirupathi, is a long-pending demand of local commuters, especially senior citizens and women. More long-distance trains should be halted at the railway station,” says T. Gunaseelan, a long-time commuter in Ambattur.
At present, the extension work is being done in the Avadi direction with long-distance trains mainly those meant for Jolarpet and Tirupathi, halting at the railway station for the past one month. The halting time at the station is around one minute.
It should be noted that unlike suburban trains, which have only 12 cars, long distance trains have 24 cars and more. Trains to Tirupathi have at least 24 cars. Currently, the platforms at the station can accommodate only 12 cars. At present, the station has three platforms of which platform 1 and 2 are used for suburban trains and the third platform is used for goods and express trains.
“The entire work is expected to get completed in a few months at the railway station,” said a railway official.