KMTA to have jurisdiction over GCDA, GIDA areas soon

The jurisdiction of the Kochi Metropolitan Transport Authority (KMTA), which was inaugurated on Sunday, will be extended to areas under the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) and the Goshree Islands Development Authority (GIDA) shortly.

Apart from different modes of public transport and bicycles, the authority will henceforth oversee the condition of roads and allied infrastructure, and also traffic regulation. It will oversee road repair and resurfacing works as well.

Cycle tracks

Priority will be accorded to ensure adequate availability of public transportation modes in the Greater Kochi area. Cycle tracks will be laid wherever possible, to ensure safety of bicyclists. Footpaths will be made differently abled-friendly. It will rely on mobile apps to effectively coordinate its functioning. Commuters will thus be able to select their chosen mode of travel from among metro rail, buses, trains, autos, taxi cars or ferries, well before they set on a journey, thus ensuring seamless and hassle-free commute.

Smart cards will ensure smooth fare payment. All this is expected to provide a facelift to the Greater Kochi area and commuting in the region. The authority will operate on the lines of Singapore Land Transport Authority, for fast and effective functioning.

Authority’s powers

A Government Order dated September 24 bestows a wide array of powers on the authority. It can thus curb entry of polluting vehicles into green zones, take strategic steps to streamline public transport and cargo transit and to make optimal use of technology to bring in sustainable and cost-effective infrastructure development. The KMTA can also levy congestion fee, mobility improvement fee and public transport development fee. It can also impose curbs on movement of select vehicles during peak hours and clamp down on polluting vehicles.

The body has been vested with the power to ban abandoning of vehicles on road sides and to rope in stakeholders to open parking lots, bus and logistics ports. It is further empowered to levy fees and regulate non-transport vehicles, including e-commerce and goods delivery vehicles.

It is duty-bound to take frequent stock of transportation situation in the region and bring lacunae to the State government’s notice. It must choose a full-time CEO who has wide exposure in transport management and engineering and also in urban planning.

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Printable version | Oct 17, 2021 5:36:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/kmta-to-have-jurisdiction-over-gcda-gida-areas-soon/article32998047.ece

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