IIM-K submits report on Water Metro’s fare structure

A 3D image of KMRL’s Water Metro ferries that are being built at Cochin Shipyard.  

Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) is in the process of finalising the fare structure of 23 ferries that will be introduced this month as part of the ₹747-crore Water Metro project, with the Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode (IIM-K) conducting a comprehensive survey and submitting a report.

The metro agency’s finance wing is reviewing the report, following which the Managing Director will take a call on the fare structure and forward it to the State government for approval. The fare would most likely be similar to that charged by Vega-120, the State Water Transport Department’s partly-AC fast ferry that operated in the Vaikom-Ernakulam-Fort Kochi sector, said official sources.

The foray of KMRL into the water transport sector is expected to usher in competition with the SWTD that traditionally dominated the sector and ferries commuters at rock-bottom fares. The two agencies are largely eyeing the same set of commuters, especially in the Ernakulam-West Kochi sector. The entry of Water Metro vessels and safety concerns prompted the SWTD to launch two modern catamaran ferries in the sector in February. Five more will follow suit, at the rate of one vessel every 45 days.

A bulk of people living on the islands that Water Metro will serve had opined that the ticket fares ought to be reasonable since most of them were daily-wage earners.

The detailed project report for the Water Metro highlights its potential to have one lakh passengers per day in the twenty-three, 100-passenger capacity vessels in phase one and fifty-five, 50-passenger capacity vessels that will be rolled out in phase two.

Finishing touches are being given to the first Water Metro ferry that is being readied at the Cochin Shipyard. It will conduct its trial run for about a month before commencing commercial service in the Vyttila-Kakkanad route.

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Printable version | Apr 14, 2021 11:42:28 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/iim-k-submits-report-on-water-metros-fare-structure/article33966915.ece

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