Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Focus on Gandhi Nagar, Adyar

One of the pleasing landscapes you get to enjoy in the Adyar area in south Madras is on Gandhi Nagar's 4th Main Road.

When you walk or drive west from the Fortis Hospitals side, you are greeted by this simple playground on your right, on the banks of the Adyar River. The open space is special.

Once a hub of sports activities, the ground became a ghost space after the men who managed its affairs got into some funny acts.

The ground has come alive again eversince a group of senior Gandhi Nagarians decided to regain control of this play space and develop it.

So, TNCA cricket leagues matches and those for city schools are not hosted here while walkers are encouraged to exercise and walk inside this green ground.

we tapped into the enthusiam of this group to suggest a Madras Week event and so, a Gandhi Nagar Walk is being planned by journalist G C Shekhar and community activist Shekar Raghavan.

Many VIPs of the city lived in this nagar which was perhaps the first planned and developed nagar of the city and where some of the best art deco bungalows came up.

Actors, writers, journalists, sportspeople and businessmen dotted this nagar. Their stories and those of the houses and of local life will be shared.

Gandhi Nagar is a different nagar today - hundreds of apartments raised on grounds where the bungalows once stood. But it has a charm of its own, perhaps because the green cover survives. Or am I wrong here?

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