Civic and other Government agencies that have to ensure the upkeep of roads are yet to repair badly-damaged stretches of the roads in the city.
Similar is the situation in West Kochi, Thripunithura and Kalamassery.
This has resulted in motorists being forced to travel through backbreaking stretches. Pedestrians too have to be on their guard since vehicles passing by splash dirty water over them. As for shopowners and traffic policemen, they have no other option but to endure the dust and dirt emanating from the slushy roads.
Severely-potholed arterial and side roads have been causing huge traffic snarls and accidents. An example is Kaloor Junction, where unscientific drains resulted in water logging on the road. This caused gaping potholes all over the road, worsening traffic snarls at the even otherwise chaotic junction.
Despite this, the Corporation of Kochi has not taken steps to at least temporarily restore the surface. Though the Edapally-Thevara road is maintained by the PWD (Roads and Bridges wing), the Corporation had volunteered to ensure its upkeep by utilising JNNURM funds. The plight of the Corporation-owned Karshaka Road that leads to the eastern entry of the Ernakulam Junction railway station and that of the Chitoor Road is even worse, affecting residents and thousands of train and bus commuters.
Less said the better about the plight of side roads maintained by the Corporation. Mayor Mercy Williams said that the stir by contractor's demanding long-pending dues from the civic agency would delay repair and resurfacing of arterial and side roads. “The Council recently demanded that the State Government enhance the quality of resurfacing by permitting 40-mm chipping carpet, instead of the 20-mm resurfacing being done now,” she said.
The PWD (Roads and Bridges wing) repaired some of the severely-potholed stretches in the city, though they are yet to be fully restored.
“They include the road in front of the Naval Base and the Government Guest House. Repairs on the Thammanam-Vytilla road can be taken up only after the Kerala Water Authority replaces the damaged pipelines,” said T I Jose, executive engineer. The agency would also have to repair and maintain the High Court-Goshree Islands road that it recently took over from GIDA.
Meanwhile, the Corporation and the PWD have been unable to establish a tar-patch-work unit that was promised over three years ago for the city. The mobile unit would have been able to repair potholes as soon as they develop.