To promote beach tourism iconic beaches Marina & the Elliots in Chennai will get funding from Central government.  The cost of the Marina makeover is estimated at Rs. 12.5 crores and that of the Besant Nagar beach at Rs. 8.5 crores.  “Eight beach-cleaning machines will be procured.  Currently, one machine is being used to clean the Marina beach sands,” said an official.   From labour statue to Lighthouse on the stretch of the Marina five of the new cleaning machines will be put to work.  However, the stretch from Light House to Srinivasapuram, where a large number of fisher settlements are located, will be left to itself.  A proposal to give a facelift to the stretch from Light House was shelved following protests from fishermen.  In 2014, the Corporation prepared a project report for walkways, benches, a gallery, bicycle tracks, concrete roads, service trenches, rainwater trenches and streetlight fittings at a cost of Rs. 40 crore for the 2.8-km stretch from Light House to Foreshore Estate.  While the other components were shelved road and stormwater drains were completed.  “Access to the beach will improve. Beach approach facility for persons with disability will be developed near Gandhi Statue and Kannagi Statue,” said an official. Elliot’s beach will also get such facilities.  Along the beaches, information centres will be located at various spots. The Corporation will develop such facilities and personnel from the Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation will man them to guide beach-goers.  The Marina will get modern toilets in two more locations. The civic body will develop watchtowers, offer facilities such as beach umbrellas for visitors and improve the promenade.  In September work will be completed.


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