As part of the move to construct a third line between Chennai Beach and Korukkupet, Southern Railway has signed an agreement with the Chennai Port Trust for acquisition of land.

Vashishta Johri, General Manager, Southern Railway, said a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Railways and the port trust recently for exchange of land to develop a third line.

He added that the expansion work had already started and at present, bushes were cleared and the designated area between Royapuram and the Washermenpet railway stations were being levelled.

The proposed line between Beach and Korrukkupet would help link it to Athipattu, as a third line had been commissioned between Athipattu and Korukkupet.

The third line — which is expected to be completed by March 2018 — would help speed up suburban train services towards Athipattu on the northern section and Thiruvallur on the western section.

The third line project — to be executed at a cost of Rs.142 crore for a length of 4.1 kilometres — would involve modification of two Railway overbridges between Chennai Beach and Washermenpet.

At present, there are only two lines between Chennai Beach and Korrukkupet.

With only two tracks, long-distance trains, freight trains and suburban services are forced to compete with one another.

As a result, Southern Railway finds it difficult to operate more suburban train services and there are complaints of delays in operating services.

Sridhar Joshi, who commutes from Perambur to Thiruvanmiyur, said the commissioning of the third line would not only help decongest the Moore Market suburban railway station, but also give Southern Railway the option of operating more direct trains from Thiruvallur to Velachery and Tambaram.

Southern Railway has plans to construct a fourth line between Chennai Beach and Athipattu for a length of 22.10 kilometres

The project will provide a direct link to Athipattu. Southern Railway had already completed a third line between Korukkupet and Athipattu

This line was commissioned at a cost of Rs. 155 crore for a length of 18 km

Once the third line is commissioned, more direct trains can be operated from western and northern suburban routes to Tambaram and on Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) to Velachery