To commemorate his celebrated northern campaign to the Ganges, Rajendra assumed the title of Gangaikonda Chola and had the Siva Temple Gangakkondacholeswaram built. Soon after the capital was moved from Thanjavur to Gangaikondacholapuram. Rajendra probably founded the city of Gangaikondacholapuram before his 17th year.
Most of the Chola kings who succeeded Rajendra were crowned here. They retained it as their capital, reoriented and trained the efficient Chola army. It is not known whether the capital was moved to the new location for strategic purposes, as the old capital Thanjavur had very strong fortifications.