Clamour for key ring roads gets louder

Chaotic: The ring road project proposed around Vyttila to decongest the biggest junction in the State remains a non-starter even though there was a budget allocation in 2016.  

The city’s eastward extension has given impetus to the demand to resurrect the ring road project mooted over a decade ago by the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA).

The ₹360-crore project was put on the back burner by previous governments. The GCDA had announced a year ago that it had to be executed as a long-term project (in phases), taking into account increasing traffic congestion in the city.

Salim V., Chairman, GCDA, said that the project made little progress during the past many years, mainly because GCDA did not have funds. “We will convene a meeting shortly to probe ways to go ahead with the project,” he said.

As per plan, the proposed 64-km ring road would begin from Chathiath near the first Goshree Bridge at Marine Drive and go up to Vaduthala as an elevated corridor. The first phase till Vaduthala was to be built on pillars since permission to fill backwaters was not granted.

The rest of the corridor would be at grade. The second phase is slated from Cheranalloor to Varapuzha and the third phase from NH 17 to Athani on NH 47. The fourth phase would be between Puthencruz on NH 47 and NH 49 while the final phase would be from Puthencruz to Panangad.

Vyttila ring road

The ring road proposed around Vyttila to decongest the biggest junction in Kerala too is a non-starter.

A preliminary project report for this was readied by Better Kochi Response Group (BKRG), a city-based NGO. No government agency has begun even preparatory works, although the previous UDF government set apart funds in the 2016 budget.

‘Flyover not enough’

The NGO’s president, S. Gopakumar, said that the junction urgently needs a ring road, since the 16-km-long NH Bypass has become a part of the city, which is expanding eastward. Moreover, half a dozen major roads converge at Vyttila.

“The upcoming flyover alone won’t be able to ensure streamlined flow of vehicles, since inter-State, inter-district and intra-district vehicles, including container lorries, national permit lorries and hundreds of multi-axle buses pass through the junction,” he said.

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Printable version | May 4, 2021 6:29:05 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/clamour-for-key-ring-roads-gets-louder/article28119568.ece

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