With the construction work of the Kochi Metro Rail beginning on June 7, the need for implementing some major infrastructure projects has gained momentum.
When the Metro Rail work begins, the traffic will have to be diverted and the stakeholders of city’s development believe that this is the right time to implement the key infrastructure projects by including it in the list of Metro Rail-related works.
Initially, five major works were entrusted with the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) as preparatory works for the Kochi Metro Rail at an estimated cost of Rs 158 crore. This include the reconstruction of Ernakulam North RoB, the construction of a new flyover connecting Salim Rajan Road and Rajaji Road and the widening of MG Road, South Railway Station Road and Banerjee Road.
Among the works, DMRC had already completed the construction of the new RoB, which was christened as A L Jacob RoB, and it was commissioned the other day. Though actually scheduled to be completed in 18 months, the bridge was completed in 16 months.
The State Government had already entrusted DMRC with the construction of a new flyover at Edappally too.
“But we need to implement other projects too. Edappally Flyover, which is expected to be completed in 18 months will help in easing the congestion at Edappally. Once the construction of Metro begins, we will have to divert the traffic through other roads. We have already requested the Chief Minister to release the funds for acquiring land for the widening of Thammanam-Pulleppady Road, which will play a crucial role on traffic diversion,” said Mayor Tony Chammany.
As per the Plan, the Thammanam-Pulleppady Road will be developed into 22 metre from the existing 18 metre.
Along with Thammanam-Pulleppady Road widening, other projects that need to be completed before the commissioning of Kochi Metro Rail are the new RoB at Pachalam and Atlantis. “The Pachalam Railway is still a major reason for the traffic bottleneck in that area. We have already requested the state government to take steps for carrying the project forward,” said Hibi Eden MLA.
Along with that, experts say that the reconstruction of South RoB should be included in the list of Kochi Metro Rail related projects. Since its will be difficult to carry out any major construction work like widening of South RoB after the commissioning of Metro Rail project, the State should seek the assistance of Kochi Metro Rail Limited to chalk out a plan for the South RoB revamping.
“Once these projects are included among the preparatory works of Kochi Metro rail, the work should be entrusted with DMRC which can ensure the completion of the projects within the scheduled time,” experts added.