Running out of options due to astronomical prices within the city, Chennaites are buying houses and properties on the fringes of the city. Chennai is expanding and expanding fast. The question is how far will it grow?
People are commuting from the periphery region of Chennai into the city for jobs. Houses and commercial spaces have mushroomed around Chennai. At a slow pace, these periphery limits are being absorbed into the city area itself. The areas like Guduvancheri and Vandalur, which was once considered to be very far from Chennai; is now a part of urban agglomeration. Siruseri, Navalur in OMR is bustling with IT industries and has undergone a massive changeover. Agriculture land is being converted into commercial spaces. The ECR is dotted with bungalows and resorts which stretches for miles. Builders have started investing in and around city limits and people are ready to buy. It is proposed to include Kancheepuram, Chengalpet, Gummudipoondi, Uttararmerur, and Cheyyur taluk as greater Chennai region. A Bill has been passed in the state assembly to include nine municipalities, 8 town panchayats, 25 village panchayats, all to be incorporated in the Chennai corporation. Chennai is on the way to become a mega urban agglomeration.
One thing is for sure; migration will not cease and it will put some serious pressure on the urban infrastructure and amenities. To give some breathing space, the city authorities are encouraging periphery settlement around Chennai. Growth models of Mumbai as well as Bangalore are being studied. City officials are planning to adapt these models according to Chennai’s expansion. But what is needed, is a new growth model that would take into account, the local needs and problems. One unique feature of the urban agglomeration in Chennai is that you would find small rural set ups mixed with high rise commercial building.
The government is also doing its part in creating urban centers outside Chennai city to restrict migration. With a ever increasing population Chennai is expanding spatially. As the city expands, government faces uphill task of administration. Multiplicity of regulating bodies will create operational problems and massive efforts would be needed by the government to counter it. It is also hoped that the development of urban infrastructure will keep pace with the rapid expansion of Chennai.