India’s first Water Metro is coming to Kochi. It is expected to be plying by November 2020, an year from now.
It connects 10 islands in Kochi through 15 routes, spanning a distance of 78 km.
“Once completed, water metro will be the best water transport project in the entire Asia,” said the Managing Director of Kochi Metro Rail Limited which will manage the water Metro also.
The KMRL project proposal says that the project is expected to reduce pollution and traffic congestion in the city and also ease access to business areas on the mainland for urban households along the Kochi lakeshore. Water transport is also inherently more energy efficient than rail and road transport. The project plans to inroduce modern energy efficient environment friendly and safe boats.
There will be a fleet of 78 electrically propelled hybrid ferries plying to 38 jetties. The number of stations identified is 38. It is envisaged to be a ‘socially inclusive transport system than being just a transport service’, says the proposal.
I hope this will be the precursor to linking rivers and a state wide water transport in Kerala. In fact preliminary steps are being taken and this could change the way people travel in God’s Own Country.
My stop in the Water Metro is Thevara, the fifth from bottom in the map.