TechnoparkToday.com >> The idea of Trivandrum monorail project began as a mass transit system between Balaramapuram and Kazhakkoottam. It was proposed as a solution to the two problems spiraling out of control – the perennial traffic blocks between Balaramapuram and city centre, and the transit from city of over 30,000 personnel working in Technopark. Monorail would be cheaper than the metro, and ideally suited for “medium” cities like Trivandrum. Imagine – Statue to Technopark in 20 minutes flat, one service every 5 mins, and no traffic jams!
Now, the project is extended to Technocity, and unfortunately, Technopark is out of the network!
According to the last NATPAC report, the rail would go from Karyavattom straight to Kazhakkottam, without touching Technopark. This is bizarre, since without the last-mile connectivity, not many would be using it. The proposal is to use low-floor A/C buses as a feeder service . But consider this: one train would have a capacity of around 560 persons. If one arrives, how many buses would be needed to clear this? 8-10. And if the next one comes within 5 mins, and like this all through the morning peak hour? The roads around Technopark would be jammed with buses, themselves jammed with people. A feeder service cannot usurp the main line. That is why it is called a feeder service.
And regarding Technocity, there is only one project committed to Technocity (Infosys) which might need monorail service. The other commitment is from TCS, which would develop a global training centre, a self-contained township – so there is no need of a daily mass rapid system. This is not to say monorail service should not be extended to Technocity. Extending even to Attingal is a good idea, since this would allow the city to grow north. But this should not be at the cost of bypassing Technopark.
Why are the planners more concerned with the few thousand people who MAY work at Technocity sometime in the future, rather than the over 30,000 people in Technopark RIGHT NOW, commuting daily?
The usual problems of land acquisition, and local resistance are not applicable for a monorail network through Â Technopark, since all land is available either with the University or Technopark. No single family has to be evicted, no businesses shifted. Just two extra kilometers, and 30,000 users PER DAY may find it useful. The only “sufferers” – auto drivers – may be shifted, so that they act as feeder services, along with “Tech Express” services as now, from the Technopark monorail station to Phase3 of Technopark. Note that HCL, Accenture and many others have committed to the Phase 3, and L&T is building up one of the finest IT parks there. More companies are likely to come up here than in the real-estate-lobby-inflated Technocity.
The monorail project is now in the hands of DMRC. Be sure to raise your voice for the inclusion of Technopark in the project. Take this up with your HR representatives, with Technopark, with the local media, and with your elected representatives. A united action now, can make the difference of a lifetime! Act!