S.N. Jn.-Poothotta road to be widened

PWD to complete the project in 18 months; land acquisition set to begin this month

The PWD (Roads Wing) and the Kerala Road Fund Board (KRFB) have set an 18-month time frame to widen the narrow but congested 13.40-km-long Thripunithura S.N. Junction-Poothotta corridor into a four-lane road.

KIIFB had earmarked ₹450 crore in the second quarter of 2020 to acquire land and to hew out a 22-m wide road, in order to augment connectivity with Vaikom and Kottayam.

Official sources said that the government recently gave financial sanction to acquire approximately 12 hectares for the project. The land acquisition process is set to begin this month itself. As per the alignment, the road ought to have 11-m width on either side, from the centre of the existing road.

It would vary between 10 m and 12 m in a few places, where the alignment would have a marginal change, in order to straighten steep curves.

Currently, drawings of plots to be acquired are being readied, with their corresponding survey numbers. The tahsildar will then submit a report to the Revenue Department to kick-start the land-acquisition process. The PWD had laid boundary stones over a year ago, despite encountering protests in a few locations.

The road from S.N. Junction and ending at Poothotta Bridge can be widened in another 15 to 18 months, if everything go as scheduled.

Thripunithura MLA M. Swaraj convened a meeting a week ago to fast-track the works which suffered delay due to local body polls, PWD sources said.

The development of the arterial road as a four-lane corridor gains relevance since the Kochi metro’s Thripunithura SN Junction extension is set to be commissioned in 2021 and its further extension up to the terminal station proposed near Thripunithura railway station in yet another year. It would also considerably decongest Thripunithura town and nearby areas.

Narrow roads, mostly owned by the PWD, abound in the densely populated temple town.

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