Proposal was to turn the abandoned station into a passenger terminus

Southern Railway has shot down the proposal to revive Ernakulam Goods (ERG) Station into a passenger terminus.

On Tuesday, Southern Railway general manager Rakesh Misra visited the 39-acre site and took a look at a detailed drawing of development plans pegged at Rs 300 crore.

Mr. Misra said: “I wonder if the proposal to revive the station will ever materialise. Definitely not in the immediate future.”

It appears that the development plans (for which a blueprint was submitted to Railway Board by the Southern Railway) cannot take off since the adjacent level crossing (at Pachalam) is too narrow and heavily built up on either side. This chicken neck prevents laying a parallel track for two-lane movement of trains. Moreover, there is inadequate space for establishing a ‘shunting neck’ for trains with 24 coaches, said Mr. Misra.

But the station has space for five platforms, three pitlines and three stabling lines, apart from plenty of vacant, unused space. Though Ernakulam Junction and Town stations are hard pressed for space, the amenities at the Goods station were never put to better use.

A single-line track from ERG station premises up to Pachalam is still intact. Foreseeing Southern Railway’s nod for the station’s revival, Thiruvananthapuram Railway Division had recently cleared mud and weeds from the tracks. Encroachments too were identified and the railway boundary demarcated.

Mr. Misra also visited the site for overbridge proposed at Pachalam. Later, he visited Ernakulam Goods Yard (coaching yard) at Kathrikadavu and probed expansion plans. At Harbour Terminus station in Wellingdon Island, he was shown steps being taken to increase storage capacity of food grains in FCI godowns.

Divisional Railway Manager Rajesh Agrawal and Ernakulam Area Manager of Southern Railway P.L. Ashok Kumar were among those who accompanied Mr. Misra.

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