Close on the heels of readying a conceptual design of the station that has been envisaged in Thiruvananthapuram as part of the ₹63,941 CR. SilverLine semi-high-speed railway project, Kerala Railway Development Corporation (KRDCL or K-Rail) has invited bids to ready architectural designs/drawings for the 10 other stations in the State.
Elaborating on this, official sources said a conceptual design of the Thiruvananthapuram station was readied in coordination with KITCO, based on expected patronage, passenger amenities and safety requirements. "All stations will be developed on a PPP model, for which the conceptual design could be a benchmark. The amenities envisaged include adequate parking space and shops. Stakeholders who associate with station-development works can further improve on this and bring in other passenger amenities."
The bids have been invited since Railway Board has given in-principle approval for SilverLine, based on which pre-investment activities up to Rs 100 cr can be done. This will also help K-Rail to invite tenders to construct stations as soon as the Board accords formal sanction for the project. Land needed for the stations has already been freezed and the details handed over to the Government. The tender documents for civil engineering works for the entire project are being readied, the sources said.
The intermediate stations include Kollam, Chengannur, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Kochi Airport, Thrissur, Tirur, Kozhikode and Kannur, while a terminal station will come up at Kasargod.
The design for stations that would handle cargo and roll-in, roll-off (RoRo) traffic are set to follow. They have been envisaged near Pallipuram in Thiruvananthapuram and near Pallikkara in Kochi, it is learnt.
While a passenger station has been planned adjacent to the international airport in Kochi, a fleet of modern buses would be introduced from the terminal station in Thiruvananthapuram to the international airport located nearby, sources said.
The agency has also invited bids to do hydrographic survey to ensure that there are adequate number of openings beneath SliverLine's embankment, so that the 530-km-long Thiruvananthapuram-Kasargod alignment does not affect natural flow of water. For this, the survey will study the terrain, history of rainfall and other parameters. This is aimed at putting to rest the concern that the SilverLine alignment will divide the State into half.
Currently, soil tests have been completed, while a rapid Environment Impact Assessment (rapid-EIA) report is ready. Studies will shortly be completed to ready a comprehensive EIA report, it is learnt.