MRC Nagar – Then and Now

Bellicia Towers

MRC Nagar shot into prominence when the wedding of Amma’s Valarppu Magan was celebrated sometime in 1996 (or 1995?) in a giant Pandal erected there. MRC Nagar was otherwise a predominantly residential neighbourhood. For a short period when I stayed at Santhome, in 1999, during my daily walk I have observed the following :

Rani Meyyamai Towers was under construction. There were talks that Madras Stock Exchange had sold their property to Sun TV. Mayor Ramanathan Chettiar Centre was coming up. In the open space before Rani Meyyammai Towers , the youth from the local area assemble to play cricket matches during weekends and early mornings during holidays.

ICICI Bank, Chennai

The scene at MRC Nagar is totally different now. ICICI Bank has come up on the Greenways Road. MRC Centre is the venue for various celebrity weddings, exhibitions and job fairs. Rani Meyyammai Towers is fully complete and occupied. True Value Homes has completed their Bellicia Twin Towers and Chaitanya’s high rise is coming up fast.

Chaitanya's Construction

Hindu reports that Viceroy Hotel and SUN TV Studio and Office projects are cleared by the Planning Authorities and Leela Kempinski’s hotel project is in advanced stage of approval.

When the slums between Nochikuppam and Sreenivasapuram and the Tamil Nadu Government employees’ quarters at the Foreshore Estate have been demolished and rebuilt, the Santhome-Adyar stretch of the coast will get a facelift. The proposed landscaping around a portion of the Adyar creek will complete the beautification scheme.
Such intensified development has its own problems. Changes in the traffic pattern of the roads leading to this area have got experts worried .

Exnora International Trustee T. Ramkumar feels that the proposed scale of development will harm the fragile ecosystem of the Adyar Creek area. He also finds the projects to be inconsistent with the Government of Tamil Nadu’s proposal to develop the entire Adyar creek area as an Eco park.

One feels happy about the developments which will make MRC Nagar a commercial hub of the City. But long time residents of MRC Nagar will miss the quiet environs they enjoyed in the past.

(with inputs from The Hindu of May 1, 2007)

5 Comments so far

  1. sachin (unregistered) on May 9th, 2007 @ 1:30 am

    I think the Chennai JW Mariott is also coming up in MRC Nagar..


  2. Nishanth (unregistered) on May 9th, 2007 @ 3:20 am

    Last Sunday I was at the broken bridge (Besant nagar) looking at these huge high rise buildings in MRC nagar and thinking about the days when it was a quite neighbourhood.I did my schooling at Chettinad Vidyasharm,so I have a lot of memories about this area.The only commercial place in those days that I can remember of was a small bank.

    I think most residents of MRC nagar wouldn’t mind their area becoming a commercial hub because of the sky rocketing prices of land in that area.


  3. Navaneethan Santhanam (unregistered) on May 9th, 2007 @ 5:09 am

    I can’t wait until the MRC projects get done – The area is going to have some spectacular highrise buildings in a few years!


  4. John Adams (unregistered) on May 10th, 2007 @ 2:37 am

    MRC Nagar should have some retail development to go with the residential,office and hotel developments.It needs to have atleast one or two large mall,multiplex projects.If it can have even one then its sure to become one desirable area to live in for the future.I hope developers are listenting.


  5. Nancy (unregistered) on May 10th, 2007 @ 9:39 pm

    Where Rani Meyyamai Towers is now, was a wonderful haven for birds. Members of the Madras Naturalist Society used to come over almost every weekend to birdwatch. Obviously, that’s all over now.

    The residents of MRC Nagar may welcome the development if they want to sell their property at high prices and move to the outskirts of the city — but if they plan to stay put, the prospect of increased traffic, burden on electricity and water, the noise of the kalyana mandapam, etc. etc., are a disturbing prospect.



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