KOCHI: The Kochi Metro, which has effected a tectonic shift in the city’s public transport system, on Monday completed two years of successful operations. On June 17, 2017, the Metro service from Aluva was commissioned. Initially, the service was only till Palarivattom. Last year, the Metro’s services were extended to Maharaja’s College.
“Now, Kochi Metro’s average daily ridership is 40,000 passengers. During weekends, the average ridership goes upto 45,000. It is likely to go up further when the services are extended till Thykoodam this year,” said Kochi Metro Rail Ltd (KMRL) authorities.
The Kochi Metro also had several firsts to its credit in the two years of its operations. These, include feeding pods on Metro stations, E- auto feeder service, solar power plants in its yard and station roof, plastic bottle recyclers and rainwater harvesting.
Even as the services are scheduled to be extended till Thykoodam by August this year, the Metro authorities are planning to further extend the services to Petta by March next year. Once the service reaches Petta, Kochi Metro phase I will be completed.
Meanwhile, a few stakeholders of city’s development said the purpose of Kochi Metro will be fully served only if the services offer connection to Tripunithura and areas like Kakkanad.
“Kochi Metro is yet to break even. The passenger volume traffic has not witnessed a spurt. It has partly succeeded in decongesting the roads from Aluva to Kochi. The Kerala Model of economic development - high quality of life even with low per capita income - had attracted global attention for its inclusivity and women’s empowerment. Keeping in tune with this Kerala model of inclusion, Kochi Metro has made a laudable inclusive initiative by employing many transgender(TG) persons ,” said V K Vijayakumar Chief Investment Strategist, Geojit Financial Services.