There is a great need for the Kochi Corporation and the Kerala government to begin the land acquisition process for the development of Goshree-Mamangalam Road in Kochi as a corridor parallel to Banerjee Road. There is an urgent need to widen the extremely narrow strip of the road near the church since motorists coming from the four-lane road often meet with accidents.
No progress has been made to widen the narrow 5-km-long corridor from Chatiath church to Mamangalam near Palarivattom over a decade since the project was mooted. Land acquisition is yet to begin despite the State government giving the nod to acquire land by invoking the urgency clause. Though conceived as a four-lane road, the corporation decided to hew out a two-lane road because of the massive cost of land acquisition. Even this work has not begun.
The corporation has a gruelling task at hand since delay on its part resulted in the estimated cost of land acquisition rising to around Rs 300 crore, from less than Rs.100 crore a few years ago. The proposed corridor was envisaged to decongest the arterial Banerjee Road that provides east-west connectivity and hence is the preferred route of public transport buses and private vehicles.
The work on the new road is crucial since civil works of Kochi Metro will be undertaken for another 22 months along Banerjee Road, for which traffic regulations will be in place. The Goshree Islands Development Authority (GIDA) had built the 1.50-km-long four-lane road from the entry point to the first Goshree bridge up to Chatiath church, on land reclaimed from the backwaters.