The construction of a walkway along the stretch from Alexander Parambithara Bridge to the junction near the new Mattanchery Bridge (BOT Bridge) on Willingdon Island is likely to be hit with the Department of Tourism yet to release funds.
A joint initiative of the Cochin Port Trust (CPT) and the Department of Tourism, the project will receive funds amounting to `1 crore from Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited- Kochi Refinery and the Department of Tourism. The total estimated cost of the project is `14 crore. The Cochin Port Trust (CPT) is entrusted with the task of carrying out the construction. According to CPT authorities, the Department of Tourism has not yet allotted any funds for the project. “Keeping their word, the BPCL has allotted `1 crore. The work is currently carried out with this funds,” said Guruparasad Rai M, chief engineer, Cochin Port Trust.
He said the project was scheduled to be completed by May 2013. “The lack of funds is affecting us. Of the 2.2 km, only 330 meter is completed,” he added.
Tourism Minister A P Anil Kumar said as the project cost is more than 10 crore, the department can provide the fund only after forming a special working group.
The walkway is designed to give the stretch a facelift with heavy landscapes such as food court, pavilions, children’s play area, boat jetty and much more. The sides of the road used to be inaccessible barren land that blocks the view of the waterfront.