One of Kochi’s oldest residential hubs, Thevara, is in dire need of footpaths. The long stretch of road that starts from Thevara Junction on M.G. Road’s south-west end is the most important access road for thousands of commuters to National Highway 47 bypass at Kundannoor.
The stretch is used by thousands of pedestrians everyday as there are a number of educational institutions and government offices in the area.
However, starting from the junction, a walk to the south reveals that there is virtually no footpath on either side of the road.
The stretch of road under the rail overbridge at the entrance to Thevara poses the biggest threat to pedestrians. The road is narrow and there is absolutely no space for people to walk. Besides, the waste water drain on the western side of the road that passes under the bridge is open, its slabs having been taken off apparently to decongest the canal.
There is no footpath even further down the road and pedestrians are forced to adopt various strategies to avoid the heavy vehicular traffic. Some use the brief spells when traffic thins down to switch sides or to negotiate a particularly narrow portion of the road.
Temporary stalls set up by vendors have also take away precious space meant for pedestrians.
In contrast, the entrance to Thevara on M.G. Road is marked by broad and elevated footpaths on the two sides. However, the access to the footpaths is blocked by two-wheelers parked there despite a ‘No Parking’ signboard.
The lack of a traffic signal or a traffic island at the entrance only adds to the utter traffic chaos in the area, especially during peak hours.