KOCHI:The Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) has begun peg marking on the Kaloor-Kakkanad stretch on Wednesday, as part of the proposed expansion of the Metro Rail to Infopark.
The agency that has been entrusted with the task is expected to complete the work within a month. Recently, the State Government had given approval for extending the Metro Rail to Infopark via Kakkanad.
The total estimated cost for extending the project from Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium to Kakkanad is Rs 2,017.46 crore.
Work on the 11.2-km stretch will be carried out as phase-I(b) of the Kochi Metro Rail project. As per the plan, there will be 11 stations - Palarivattom Junction, Palarivattom Bypass, Chembumukku, Vazhakkala, Kunnumpuram, Kakkanad Junction, Kochi SEZ, Chittethukara, Rajagiri, InfoPark-I and InfoPark-II.
Meanwhile, peg marking of the 1.7-km stretch between Pettah and SN Junction in Tripunithura was completed in three days.
For the Kakkanad extension, land acquisition will be a major hurdle for the KMRL, especially on the comparatively narrow stretch between Palarivattom and Padamugal. The total amount set aside for land acquisition is Rs 140.68 crore. An additional 3.85 acres of land is needed for preparatory works under the expansion plan.
The KMRL will be carrying forward the Metro work on its own after 2017, when the contract with the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) expires.
Meanwhile, France-based Agence Franacise de Developpement (AFD), which is providing external funding for phase-I of the Metro Rail project, has informed its willingness to fund the extension project also.