The state government of Kerala will soon take up with the Central ministry, the conferring of ‘metro’ status on Kochi city. With the green flag shown for the Metro Rail project, Kochi plans to get the ‘metro’ status with towns like Vaikom, Thodupuzha, Cherthala, Kodungalloor and Chalakkudy under its ambit.
The proposal seeking metro status for Kochi was first put forth by the Greater Cochin Development Authority. The report titled ‘Proposal for the Kochi Metropolitan City’has even proposed the formation of a Metropolitan Development Authority. Chairman of Greater Cochin Development Authority N Venugopal said that the report was prepared on the instructions given by the Chief Minister.
“Along with Metro status, the report moots the formation of a Metropolitan Development Authority which will cover a wider agglomeration area that includes towns from neighbouring districts such as Thrissur, Alappuzha, Kottayam and Idukki,” said Venugopal. He also added that the Metro proposal was chartered out following the big leap made by Kochi in 7 key sectors. “With the sanctioning of Metro Rail and other infrastructure projects, Kochi now tops other cities in the state on infrastructure, real estate and transportation,” Venugopal said.
“A lot of things have to fall in place. If any city in Kerala deserves the Metro status, it is Kochi,” said Chief Minister Oommen Chandy. A meeting has been scheduled in Thiruvananthapuram later this month, where discussions will be held on the report.
Other ministers in Kerala have also welcomed the move. “We will invite representatives from the GCDA, ministers and MLAs of the proposed area and other officials concerned for the meeting later this month. The date of the meeting will be confirmed later,” said Minister for Urban Development and Town Planning, Manjalamkuzhi Ali.
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