‘Emerging Trivandrum' demands a master plan

The city, on Friday, hosted a seminar on its development, wherein speakers stressed the need to expedite the preparation of a master plan. The participants highlighted the need for a development package including better road connectivity and infrastructure improvement of suburban towns. The seminar, the first of a series named ‘Emerging Trivandrum,' was organised in connection with the inauguration of the renovated Trivandrum Hotel at Statue here.

BJP leader and former Union Minister O. Rajagopal said, “Thiruvananthapuram has always been known as one of the cleanest cities in the world. It is imperative that we maintain this lead.” He also said that the city had good educational institutions, an advantage that could elevate it to an education hub. “One of the major hindrances in the growth of this city is the road infrastructure. There is a need to work towards easing traffic congestion. One suggestion would be to set up a fly over from Kesavadasapuram to East Fort.”

Congress leader M.M. Hassan said that a high-level committee should be set up to monitor the capital's development. “Better roads, flyovers, drainage, drinking water and solid waste disposal should be priority projects. Flooding of Thampanoor and East Fort during the monsoon remains a problem must be looked into.” He proposed a skywalk for easy commuting to bus stand and railway station. Mr. Hassan called for an alternative model focussing on the development of satellite towns in the suburbs instead of encouraging vertical growth of the city.

Historian and chairman of the Vylopilly Samskrithi Bhavan, M.G. Sasibhooshan said that development should not be at the cost of the city's heritage and natural beauty. He underlined the need to protect the rivers and ponds and preserve the ecological wealth of the city.

Mr. Rajagopal also proposed that the international airport be named after Sri Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, the last ruler of erstwhile Travancore, who was instrumental in setting up the city's first airport. E.M. Najeeb, president, Chamber of Commerce, suggested naming the domestic airport after G.V. Raja, who played a key role in setting up the Sports Council in Kerala.

Suresh Babu, CMD, Vizhinjam International Seaport Ltd., said focus should be on the development of four sectors — IT/ITES services, health care, tourism and education.

New-look hotel

Earlier, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy inaugurated the renovated Trivandrum Hotel. Minister for Transport V S Sivakumar unveiled a mural depicting the evolution of the institution since 1893.

The hotel has been re-launched by Spice Route Ventures Pvt. Ltd., marking their first step into the hospitality industry.

Keywords: town planning