Encroachments near Marappalam, Kowdiar and Pattom junctions are delaying the commissioning of the Kowdiar-Pattom road, which has been widened under the City Road Improvement Project (CRIP).
Residential apartment complexes at Kowdiar and Pattom junctions, a grocery shop near Marappalam, on the road leading to Pattom, and a jewellery shop near Pattom junction are encroaching upon the road, thereby stalling construction of storm water drains on these stretches.
An official of the Thiruvananthapuram Road Development Company Ltd (TRDCL), the implementing agency of CRIP, said the encroachment by the apartment complex had prevented it from constructing drains in a 60-metre stretch in Kowdiar junction and a 35-metre stretch in Pattom junction.
A ramp constructed in front of the apartment complex in Kowdiar is jutting 60 cm into the road. It should be dismantled to construct the drains and prevent flooding at the junction. After the TRDCL took up the matter with the Kerala Road Fund Board, a meeting convened at the highest level had decided to resurvey the plot and fix the boundary of the complex. “Somehow, it did not work out,” he said.
The TRDCL, on Thursday night, commenced the tarring work on the Kowdiar-Kuravankonam road without constructing the drain near Kowdiar junction. The aim is to complete the works in the stretch before the onset of the monsoon. The drain will have to be constructed later along the 60-metre stretch and connected with the existing one on the Kuravankonam side. Only after the drain is constructed and the tarring work is done, can be the junction be modified.
Another hindrance is a cable drum dumped on the mouth of the Kowdiar-Pattom road, near the gate of the Salvation Army Higher Secondary School, by the Kerala State Electricity Board. It has remained there for several together.
Shop usurps space
In the road leading from Marappalam to Pattom, a grocery shop in the corner has encroached into the road. The TRDCL has alleged that the alignment of the storm water drain was altered by vested interests to protect the shop. “The workers were abused here,” the official said. A jewellery shop at Pattom is also a culprit.
Delay in completion of work by other utilities agencies has seriously hampered road work.
The Kerala Water Authority had not filled the trenches on either side of the approach road to the newly constructed Marappalam bridge. The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which is entrusted with a water supply project, has not constructed the valve chambers at Kuravankonam junction.
The shallow sewerage line in the stretch also needs to be shifted. “Once the KWA and other agencies complete their work, we can finish the Marappalam-Pattom stretch and open it for traffic within 10 days,” the official said.
Manholes in footpaths
The TRDCL has constructed manholes in footpaths every 60 metres and has laid pipes as per the KWA specifications to connect the manholes in footpath to the manholes of the KWA in the road.
So, those needing sewerage connections will not have to dig up the road.
They will just have to bring the connection of the sewerage line from the house to the manhole in the footpath.
Sewerage line is also being laid in the 800-metre stretch from Toll Junction to Ambalamukku to prevent further digging up of the stretch.
The TRDCL said they had taken the work as there is no sewerage line in the stretch and to avoid delay in completing the road widening works even though it was not part of the memorandum of understanding.
The TRDCL says they will need a minimum of one month for completing the finishing works like construction of footpath, laying of tiles along the footpath, planning of trees and for road signs along the one-km stretch after the road tarring work is completed.