New year new hopes for Kochi
2022 is a year full of ambitions.
KOCHI: 2022 is a year full of ambitions. Many major projects under KMRL, GCDA and CSML are expected to take off this year and provide a boost to the infrastructural and technological development of the city. However, due to the Omicron threat looming large, the future of travel and tourism looks a little bleak now. Here is a list of important multi-crore projects expected to take off this year and how they will help Kochiites. Team City Express wishes you a Happy New Year!
Canal rejuvenation in full swing
Kochi Metro Rail Limited submitted a revised detailed project report to Kerala Coastal Zone Management Authority regarding the environmental clearance for the Integrated Urban Regeneration and Water Transport System. Tendering will start once the clearance is given. Under the project, six canals — Chilavannoor, Edappally, Thevara-Perandoor, Thevara and Market — will be cleaned and made navigable. “Of the six canals, KMRL intends to make the entire Edapally canal navigable and connect the water metro jetties at Eroor and Cheranaloor with it,” said an official. KMRL hopes to tender the work of Market canal by January and start the work by end of February.
Kochi Metro extension on fastrack
Though Covid and the lockdown posed several hurdles, the Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) is on a
fast track when it comes to the extension of Metro Services to SN Junction and Tripunithura. According to a KMRL official, the Phase 1A work from Petta to SN Junction is at 90 per cent completion.
The stretch, with two stations at Vadakkekotta and SN Junction, is expected to be open for the public before June. The civil works for the Phase 1B extension from SN Junction to Tripunithura Terminal are also in full swing. The land acquisition for the stretch is in the final stage and is likely to be over in January. The 11.2-km-long Phase II extension from JLN Stadium to Kakkanad is also underway. The 4.5km stretch from JLN Stadium to Kunnumpuram is being widened.
Water Metro afloat
Of the 23 boats being built by Cochin Shipyard Limited under the Kochi Water Metro Project, the first lot of ferries are expected to roll out in April, said officials of Kochi Metro Rail Limited. According to the initial revised deadline, the ferries were expected to be rolled out in December 2020. But the plan was postponed after the first few tailor-made hybrid vessels reportedly encountered teething problems. On December 31, 2021, Cochin Shipyard Limited handed over the first of the series of battery-powered electric boats for the I747 crore Water Metro project. “Five boats are under construction and will be handed over to KMRL in a couple of months. Construction of the water metro terminals are also progressing,” said an official from KMRL.
Ernakulam market redevelopment
The much-awaited redevelopment of the age-old Ernakulam market is set to commence this year. Cochin Smart Mission Limited completed the construction of the temporary market that will rehabilitate existing merchants. The total cost of the makeshift set-up is I4.98 crore. “Merchants have not been rehabilitated yet. Once the buildings get water and electricity connections, which are expected to come through in a week, the shopkeepers will occupy the 225 stalls. Demolition of existing maket will start soon after,” said a CSML official. The project completion is expected in two years. The new market is being built at an estimated cost of H72.69 crores.
P&T Colony revival
P&T Colony near Kadavanthra, home to nearly 83 families, is situated along the banks of the Perandoor canal. During a downpour, contaminated water from the canal will gush into the houses. Considering the inhabitants’ plight, a foundation stone to build an apartment complex with 88 two-bedroom apartments were laid in Mundamveli. The proposed site is owned by GCDA. According to Civic administrators, the housing project will see progress this year and will be completed by February. “The project is going at a fast pace and is being executed by GCDA. The estimated cost is I16 crore. This is one of our priority projects,” said Mayor M Anilkumar.
The Global Industrial Finance and Trade ( GIFT) City, the ambitious plan under the early bird project of Kochi-Bengaluru Industrial Corridor (KBIC), is expected to create over 1.2 lakh direct and 3.6 lakh indirect employment opportunities, giving a major boost to the state’s economic growth. As an environmental measure, it was recently stated that GIFT City, slated to come up on 220 hectares at Ayyampuzha near Aluva, will have no manufacturing units. It will have knowledge-based and banking institutions instead.