Kochi Metro: Budget cut not to affect Vyttila hub link

Kerala State Government directs Hub Society to cut Expansion Plans

Kochi:  The expected scaling down of expenditure for the second phase of Vyttila Mobility Hub will not affect the bus terminal’s proposed link to the metro rail.

About a month ago, the State government had directed the Vyttila Mobility Hub Society to cut down its Rs.450 crore expansion plans.

A metro station was envisaged in the hub’s second phase expansion to ensure inter-modal connectivity in the city. Sources in the hub society said the metro station and allied structures were planned independent of the hub’s expansion plans.

“A corridor was envisaged to link the bus terminal with the metro station and the boat jetty. The proposed scaling down of the hub’s Phase two operations will at best have minimal impact on the metro. An integrated design of the two structures is ready. While the metro will go ahead as planned, we will make a few design changes to bring down cost of Phase two,” sources said.

With the State government expressing its reservations about spending Rs.450 crore for Phase two, attempts are underway to reduce the project cost to around Rs.250 crore.

The proposed Rs.133-crore cellar parking facility for 1000 cars might be substituted with a multi-tier robotic parking system. There were fears that the underground parking lot might be flooded during heavy rain. Similarly, a proposal to build four theatres at the hub might be shifted to Phase three.

Era Constructions has readied a pair of hydraulic rigs and other equipment for piling at the site for proposed metro station and via duct passing through the hub. “The work will begin this week itself since the design and drawings are ready,” sources said.

It will also be the beginning of civil work in metro’s reach four – Ernakulam South-Pettah stretch. Piling work will be confined to the hub and later to a 700-metre portion on the eastern side because of the delay in widening the Vyttila-Pettah stretch.

Era has not been able to begin piling along S.A. Road because of the delay in relocating pipelines from the centre of the road.