CHENNAI: For their exceptional work in completing a wide variety of projects including the T Nagar pedestrian plaza, cycle-sharing scheme and rainwater harvesting drive across Chennai, Greater Chennai Corporation awarded the team of special projects on Sunday. The team led by chief engineer (special and general projects ) L Nandakumar was given the award by corporation commissioner G Prakash. Raj Cherubal, CEO of Chennai Smart City Ltd , received the award as majority of the projects executed by the special projects team were using the smart city funds.
While pedestrian plaza has been hailed as a tourist attraction on the lines of Trafalgar Square in London and Times Square in New York, the cycle sharing project has helped improve the last-mile connectivity and cut down on carbon emissions, said officials. The rainwater harvesting drive has ensured that around 3 lakh houses in the city installed structures that have helped improve the groundwater level in the city by at least four metres.
Senior officials said the recognition by corporation was much deserved as most engineers worked on a punishing schedule to finish the smart city projects, especially the pedestrian plaza. They had to work till 4am through the night to supervise the digging up work on pedestrian plaza and then return to work at 10am to attend to other issues.
"It required co-ordination with other agencies like TANGEDCO, Metrowater and police. For instance, in one case Metrowater had to be coaxed to remove blocks in a pipeline which was then done using a robotic machine," said an official.
Also multiple rounds of negotiations were conducted with the traders in Pondy Bazaar who suspected that the wide footpath was a backdoor move to bring back hawkers on to the road. "We convinced that this would increase their business as foreigners would come in. They are now happy," the official said.