Railways is planning to modernize seven railway stations in the city and the suburbs as part of the ministry’s initiative to redevelop and modernize stations to enhance travel experience and to generate revenue.
Railways is not able to offer the best of passenger amenities at these major railway stations though there is an year-on-year increase in passenger earnings and passenger movement in the last five years. Smaller stations, like Avadi, saw some improvement as they were developed as model stations under Adarsh scheme announced a few years ago.
An official said several plans were drawn up for modernization of the stations but the projects did not take off because they were either accorded low priority or needed support from railway budget. Southern Railway has been sitting on a plan to develop Chennai Central railway station and Basin Bridge yard for the last five years. Officials say these projects could be speeded up under the new initiative. There are 75 A1 class and 332 A class stations across the country. The idea is to develop self-sustainable railway stations with high standards of safety, comfort, user friendly passenger amenities, value added services.