'Swap college ground with KSHB land to end logjam'
With the KMRL and the Corporation remaining clueless on ways to solve the controversy over the plans to acquire St Albert’s college playground for Kochi Metro’s Operation Control Cell, the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) came up with a suggestion.
Addressing mediapersons on Tuesday, the GCDA chairman said that the unused land of the Kerala State Housing Board can be given to the college and this controversy can be brought to an end.
“The land behind the High Court given by the government to the Housing Board remains unused. This land can be allocated for setting up a new ground for college. As a stake holder in city’s governance, this is a suggestion we have to make,” GCDA Chairman N Venugopal said.
St Albert’s college Principal Fr Antony Arackal said that the proposal is one that can be brought to the discussion table. “We have maintained the ground for 35 years and now we are told that it won’t be our’s anymore. We are in a do or die situation. So we are open to any suggestion,” he said.
The GCDA said they are chalking out plans to solve the traffic chaos that resulting from the metro work.
“We have two plans to ease the traffic congestion. One is to construct a small bridge near the Kadavanthra market and the other to widen the approach roads to the A L Jacob overbridge,” Venugopal said. As of now, the narrow bridge in Kadavanthra is helpful only for two wheelers. The GCDA said that the new bridge will provide greater connectivity between Kadavanthra and the city. The bridge will also help to ease the traffic in the busy SA Road and can help vehicles reach the South Railway station faster.
The GCDA Chairman said that Hibi Eden MLA has agreed to help with the funding.
Venugopal said that approach roads to Salim Rajan overbridge, which has been renamed after A L Jacob, will be widened to 20 metres. Following the opening of the bridge, acute traffic congestion which was being experienced at the junction where Rajaji road meets Chittoor Road and at Abad Plaza Junction where it meets MG Road.