TNHB complex gets pulled down, fire station rises steadily

Chennai: Two important landmarks at Ashok Nagar are undergoing a major change. The Tamilnadu Housing Board (TNHB) complex has been brought down to pave way for a 22-storey residential-cum-commercial building.

The construction for a new office for the Fire and Rescue Services Station is on full swing on the opposite side.

“It will take few days to clear all the debris in the TNHB complex. According to the plan, there will be 22 floors. Of them, 18 will be for residential purpose (216 houses proposed) and the lower four will be for commercial establishments. It will take three years to complete the project,” a TNHB official said.

Built in 1974, the ground-plus-two floors building spread across two-and-a-half-acres had 72 shops. State Bank of India, ration shops, government offices and commercial shops were functioning and they have moved to neighbouring areas.

“The residential-cum-commercial mall, once constructed, will attract more people as Metro Rail station and cinema theatre complex are situated nearby,” said a senior TNHB official.

The bhoomi pooja for the Fire and Rescue Services Station was performed on 12 September, 2018 and construction work is on. The fire station, which came into existence in 1979, was inundated during the December 2015 floods.

According to officials, the new office will be a model for all other stations. The building will have two floors, apart from parking at the basement. Four bays will be constructed to park fire tenders including Bronto skylift, which can reach more than 100 metres.

The first floor will have offices for District Fire Service Officer (South), Assistant District Officer and Station Officer, two rooms to keep files and a fire equipment room. The second floor will have rooms for fire service personnel, who will be functioning 24/7, and toilets.

Karthikeyan Halan