Chennai Travels

Some observations of transport conditions and developments South India during a visit to OUBS partners AcME

Created 14 April 2003

Observations on a journey from Chennai to Mamallapuram, accompanied by Professor Balasubramanian of AcME in their air-conditioned Hindustan Ambassador.

This car is based on the 1948 Morris Oxford produced in the U.K. The current models use a 4 cylinder, 4 stroke, 55hp, 1995cc Diesel engine, or an 1817cc Isuzu petrol engine with a factory fitted air-conditioner option.

Chennai makes a significant contribution to the Indian automotive industry.

The Society of Indian Auto Manufacturers represents 34 leading automotive companies.

Amabassador with Air

Getting Around

Observations while moving around Chennai and environs


AcME is the Academy for Management Excellence, part of the Institute for Financial Management Research (IFMR), based in Nungambakkan, Chennai, Tamil Nadu.

Chennai (formerly Madras) is the 4th largest city in India, founded by the British East India company as a trading post. Fort St George was the first fort built by the British in India. It still houses a number of government buildings, and military facilities.

The British East India Company completed the fort on 23 April 1640, St George's Day.

Fort St George
St Mary's Church

St Mary's church in Fort St George is the oldest British building in Madras, dating from 1680.

The Fort's museum museum contains echoes of that era.

Other tourist tracks can be followed later in this journey.

South of the Fort, along Marina Beach stands a range of buildings which housed various functions of the British presence, now state government offices.

This is the Public Works department.

Public Works Departments
Senate House

The Senate House, on the University of Madras campus, immortalised on a 1915 postcard.

This significant architectural legacy also represents a significant conservation burden.

In the central areas, commercial buildings echo the style of the public buildings

Moving around Chennai is described later and bus and rail developments are also covered, along with infrastructure privatisation issues.

Commercial version
Atrium pastiche

Cascading Styles:

These in turn are echoed in modern commercial construction - in this case Spencer Plaza, an air-conditioned shopping mall.

Continue the journey

This page is maintained by
Stephen Little

Last update 29 April 2003

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