KATTAPPANA: The new bus stand here, which is expected to considerably ease the traffic congestion at the central junction, is set for inauguration on May 20.
Kattappana grama panchayat president Prevda Sivasankaran told The Hindu that the inauguration is tentatively fixed for May 20 and there is only minor finishing touches to get over.
The approach road to the new bus stand has been opened and the old bus stand will be used as a
transit point for buses. She said that there will not be any change in the routes of the long-distance service buses. After a trial run for a week, the problems related to traffic congestion will be analysed, she said.
Buses that come from the old bus stand will move through the police station junction. Edassery junction will be used the entry point, she said.
Seven shop spaces in the new bus stand complex have been auctioned and there is keen interest among the business community to take on lease the remaining rooms too. There are 30 shops and one main hall for use as a restaurant in the complex. The final auction will be held soon, she said.
The new bus stand is a long-cherished dream of the people for which the work was started in 2006 by Kerala Agro Industries Corporation (KAICO) with the schedule of the work to be completed in a year.
However, there were differences between the grama panchayat and KAICO with the former alleging that the agency had done works which were not assigned to it as per the agreement.
The final and the revised cost was fixed at Rs 2 crore and it was decided in favour of assigning the entire works to KAICO.
For the past three months, the work has been continuing on a war footing.
Ms. Sivasankaran said that the main roads are too narrow to accommodate the spurt in the number of vehicles especially during the peak hours.
Building bypass roads is an option to ease the present traffic congestion, she said, adding that it will help the town to grow towards more areas surrounding it. A pedestrian walkway will be marked at the central junction and more parking facilities will be allotted at different junctions, she said and added that there was no proposal to change the service routes of short distance buses.