The advantages of extending Kochi Metro Rail up to Tripunithura in Phase I of the project have prompted stakeholders to consider the subject in earnest.
For this, the Metro rail will have to be extended by a kilometre-and-a-half from Pettah, where the terminal station has been proposed.
Tripunithura Rajanagari Union of Residents’ Associations (TRURA), the apex council of residents’ associations in the town, and a few other organisations have been raising this demand for the past few years.
They cite the availability of nine acres of unused land owned by the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) on the eastern side of the toll bridge near SN Junction, where the terminal station can be located. This will augment inter-modal connectivity with the Tripunithura railway station located nearby, and the new bus terminal coming up in the area.
Besides residents of Tripunithura, those of Kakkanad and Kalamassery also stand to benefit from the extension.
Land acquisition at congested Pettah Junction can be confined to the area required for the metro station.
“A couple of acres of prime land will have to be acquired at Pettah. The subsequent delay and payment of compensation can be done away with if the terminal station is built on the unused land with SAIL and not at Pettah. This will also do away with the need to operate feeder bus services from Pettah up to Tripunithura,” said sources associated with the Metro Rail.
The Metro’s Tripunithura extension is likely to be taken up along side the extensions proposed to Kakkanad and the international airport in Phase II of the project.
“Locating the terminal station at Tripunithura in Phase I will help when the metro is extended to Kakkanad (through Airport-Seaport Road which begins 400 metres away from the SAIL land),” said TRURA’s chairman V.P. Prasad and convenor V.C. Jayendran.
Extending the metro will also decongest North Fort Junction and SN Junction – two bottlenecks in the Pettah-Tripunithura route.