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Excess fee collection at parking lot irks daily users

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The Hindu        03.03.2017

Excess fee collection at parking lot irks daily users

A two-wheeler rider waits for getting the receipt of parking fee at the parking lot at Central Bus Stand in Tiruchi on Monday.Photo: B. Velankanni RajB_VELANKANNI RAJ  

Double the fee collected for bicycles, two-wheelers

Excessive fee collection at the two-wheeler parking lot in Central Bus Stand has raised concern among users. The multi-level parking lot, owned by the Tiruchi Corporation, is being maintained and operated by a private contractor. It serves hundreds of commuters, office goers, students and traders of Tiruchi, Thanjavur, Pudukottai and Karur.

The vehicle users park their two wheelers at the bus stand before boarding buses to their respective destinations. They would have to pay parking fee for every 24 hours to the contractor for parking the vehicles.

As per the board put up by the Tiruchi Corporation, Rs. 3 is charged for bicycles. It is Rs. 5 for two wheelers per day.

The 24-hour period starts from the time of parking. But, this is hardly followed by those employed by the contractor at the parking lot. They collect Rs. 10 for two-wheelers per day. As far as bicycles are concerned, the question does arise as the parking lot hardly receives bicycles.

In addition to it, against the rules and regulations stipulated by the Corporation, the staff manning the lot force the users to pay Rs. 10 more if they fail to remove their respective two wheelers before 12.30 a.m. To the surprise of many, the fee collectors issue receipt for collecting Rs. 10 a day.

“We pay double the amount that has been stated on the display board, hardly visible to many. No one can question them for collecting the excess fee. If we raise questions, we will be landing in trouble as they abuse us,” K. Karthick of Palakkarai, a regular user of the two-wheeler parking stand said.

V. Gowthaman of Karur, another regular user said that he had seen many altercations and fisticuffs between the fee collectors and two-wheeler owners for questioning about the excess charge being collected.

“The fee is exorbitant. We are forced to park our vehicles in the open. There is no safety for our vehicles too,” Mr. Karthick also charged.

S. Pushpavanam, secretary, Consumer Protection Council, Tamil Nadu, said that the issue could not be allowed to go unchecked. There should be a transparent system.

Ensure transparency

The Tiruchi Corporation should take necessary steps to ensure transparency. It should not hesitate to cancel the licence of the contractor if he failed to follow the rules.

Responding to the complaints, Special Officer-cum-Corporation Commissioner N.Ravichandran said he would depute a team of officials to look into the issue and take appropriate action.

 

Corporation initiates move to promote bicycling tracks

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The Hindu          12.09.2016 

Corporation initiates move to promote bicycling tracks

Coimbatore Corporation Commissioner K. Vijayakarthikeyan and a few bicycling enthusiasts cycling on the Ukkadam Big Tank bund on Sunday to initiate non-motorised transport project. —Photo: S. Siva Saravanan
Coimbatore Corporation Commissioner K. Vijayakarthikeyan and a few bicycling enthusiasts cycling on the Ukkadam Big Tank bund on Sunday to initiate non-motorised transport project. —Photo: S. Siva Saravanan

Sunday morning at the Ukkadam Big Tank bund in the city was the place to be as the Coimbatore Corporation, non-government organisation ITDP and a few civil society groups got together to promote bicycling and kick start the non-motorised transport project.

Corporation Commissioner K. Vijayakarthikeyan, who was there bicycling, said that the objective of holding the event was to tell the city residents that they could use the 1.2 km stretch every day in the mornings to walk or cycle. It was also to tell them that the Corporation was initiating a few other projects that would promote non-motorised transport in the city.

The Coimbatore Corporation Council had just passed a resolution on August 31 this year to promote bicycle sharing in the city. It had designated a 20 km area covering Saibaba Colony, Tatabad, Ramnagar, P.N. Palayam, Coimbatore Railway Junction, Race Course, Ukkadam, R.S. Puram, Puliakulam, Town Hall and Gopalapuram with 140 bicycle stations and 1,600 bicycles.

The Corporation would also promote the stretch along the Perur Lake where the Corporation had created a similar facility, the Commissioner added.

ITDP’s Senior Associate-Advocacy Sarah Natasha said the Sunday exercise was more about making people aware of the facility the Corporation had created on the Ukkadam Big Tank bund and drawing people to the place everyday.

It would help the Corporation and the city when bicycling tracks were created across the city as part of the non-motorised transport project.

She said that the ITDP had taken feedback from walkers and cyclists and would do so in the next few days before going to the drawing board to discuss with architects to design non-motorised tracks in the city.

On Sunday, Radio City donated 10 re-fitted bicycles collected that were lying unused with residents of apartments in the city. The radio channel would continue the programme.

 

Multi-level car parking facility on the cards

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The Hindu       07.09.2016  

Multi-level car parking facility on the cards

Corporation plans to hire a consultant to prepare detailed project report

Faced with a traffic mess caused by the absence of parking space in many of the prime commercial areas, the Tiruchi Corporation plans to build a multi-level car parking lot in the city.

The Corporation has decided to hire a consultant through Tamil Nadu Urban Infrastructure Financial Services to prepare a detailed project report.

A resolution to this effect was approved at a recent Corporation council meeting. The move is based on a directive from the Commissioner of Municipal Administration, asking the civic body to forward a proposal to hire a consultant.

The Corporation has tentatively identified a 0.43-acre site along Rettai Vaaikal that runs across the cross roads in Thillai Nagar.

A Corporation official said the space along the channel has been cleared of encroachments and a multi-level parking lot could be constructed without affecting the drainage canal. However, a decision on the location would be taken only after a survey by the consultant, an official said.

The decision comes in the wake of persistent demands from civic activists and residents to regulate parking in places such as West Boulevard Road, NSB Road, Nandhi Koil Street, Thillai Nagar Main Road, Shastri Road and other places.

Narrow roads and indiscriminate parking of vehicles have made driving a nightmarish experience in these areas. Many of the major commercial establishments, which have set shop in multi-storey buildings, do not have parking space.

The few that could can hardly accommodate a handful of cars and two-wheelers.

In Thillai Nagar, people visiting shops and innumerable commercial establishments along Thillai Nagar Main Road and Shastri Road park their vehicles on the roadside. The situation has turned so bad that vehicles could hardly negotiate some of the cross roads, especially the 11th Cross. Accidents have become frequent at the cross road intersections.

Pay-and-park system

In 2014, the Corporation unveiled a plan to introduce a pay-and-park system on a pilot basis, predominantly in and around Thillai Nagar, but the initiative never took off. Earlier, it had toyed with an idea of building a multi-storeyed parking lot at Yanaikulam where a commercial complex is planned to be built. Civic activists have long been suggesting that a parking lot be established at Yanaikulam.

“The parking lot should be located around the Mainguard Gate area, given its proximity to the city’s main commercial areas,” said M. Sekaran, president, Federation of Consumer and Service Organisations. The Corporation should create designated parking areas in each locality and the space available beneath Thennur overbridge can be used for the purpose, he said.

But not all are convinced that the latest move by the Corporation to build a multi-level parking lot could solve the problem.

“Thillai Nagar attracts a lot of floating population and it is doubtful whether people visiting the shops and business houses would go all the way to Fort Station road to park their vehicle and walk down,” says Jude P. Armstrong, a resident of Thillai Nagar.

Pointing out that indiscriminate two-wheeler parking also caused the problem, Mr. Armstrong feels that introduction of pay-and-park system and strict enforcement would be an ideal solution.

The corporation could appoint contractors to collect the fee and it would get revenue also, he said.

N. Ramakrishnan, a civic activist, also says the Corporation would do well to find an immediate solution by earmarking parking spaces rather than squandering public money on ambitious projects.

 
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