German Nod for Water Transport Project Loan

Published: 26th February 2016 02:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th February 2016 02:39 AM   |  A+A-

KOCHI: The German government gave its nod for the loan proposal submitted by Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) to German bank KfW for the integrated water transport project in the city. The final clearance in this regard will be given at the KfW Board of Directors meeting on March 9.

The project will be financed as per the ‘climate friendly urban mobility’ plan under the Indo-German Bilateral Cooperation; and as per the deal, the KfW will give financial assistance to the tune of 85 million Euro, (approximately Rs 595 crore) as a long term soft loan. The total cost of the project is approximated at Rs 741 crore, excluding Rs 72 crore for land acquisition, out of which Rs 102 crore would be contributed by the state government.

“We have come one step closer to the project of integrated water transport for the city. KMRL is confident that we will be able to sign the agreement with KfW in March itself,”said KMRL managing director Elias George.

The initiative taken up by KMRL for developing a modern and integrated water transport system for the Greater Kochi region under the Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority (UMTA), includes introduction of modern water vehicles, renovation of boat jetties, redevelopment of access roads with street lights and connectivity from boat jetties to bus and metro stations.

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Procurement of modernised boats is part of the project. Two variants of air-conditioned and Wi-Fi enabled glass reinforced plastic (GRP) catamaran passenger ferries with passenger capacities of 50 and 100 people have been recommended by the UMTC. The boats with diesel-electric hybrid-based propulsion system can operate at an optimal speed of 8 knots, with the potential to increase up to 12 knots, once the dedicated water transit corridor is established. The boats will be powered by a combination of twin diesel-electric generators and electric motors (PMSM) for propulsion. According to the plan, the main boat jetties will be developed with Wi-Fi enabled social recreational opportunities in the vicinity. Tourism promotion will also be part of the project. Out of 38 jetties, 16 will be developed in the first phase of the project.

Engagements

■ Bolgatty Palace Convention centre: Valedictory meeting of the year-long 155th anniversary celebration of Indian Penal Code - 1860, organised by the Directorate  of Prosecution; President Pranab Mukharjee, Governor P Sathasivam and Chief Minister Oommen Chandy to  attend - 7.30 pm

■  Kuzhuppilly: Inauguration of Medical Trust Hospital by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy - 12 noon

■  Marine Drive: Inauguration of ‘Saphalam-2016,’ organised by the Society for Assistance to Fisherwomen, by Fisheries Minister K Babu; Hibi Eden MLA, K V Thomas MP and Mayor Soumini Jain to participate - at 3 pm

■  Marine Drive: Inauguration of the Janakeeya Vikasana Koottayma, organised by the LDF - 9.30 am

■  Panampilly Nagar: stone-laying ceremony of the Panampilly Nagar Sports Complex Auditorium by Sports Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan; to be presided over by Benny Bahanan MLA - 10 am

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