Construction of bridges at Beypore and Kottakkal can reduce the distance between the two cities by 40 km
The State government is considering an ambitious proposal to develop a coastal road connecting Kozhikode to Kochi for the benefit of people of north Kerala and Central Travancore.
The proposal, mooted by K. V. Shamsudheen , member of Loka Kerala Sabha and Chairman of United Arab Emirates- based Pravasi Bandhu Welfare Trust, has received a positive response from the Chief Minister’s Office.
“If this government gives its sanction to construct a bridge connecting Beypore to Kozhikode beach through the existing Kothi Bridge the distance between the two cities can be reduced by at least 25 km. Now the road between Kozhikode and Kochi covers more than 195 km,” Mr. Shamsudheen said.
Now travellers use the jhanker ferry service operating between Beypore and Chaliyam through the Chaliyar river. So instead of a jhanker service, a coastal road would be ideal. “The proposed road will join National Highway 66 in Ponnani and touch Chavakkad, Kodungallur, and Vypeen and reach Kochi, ” he said.
He said that the proposal was also brought to the attention of the new Minister for Public Works P.A. Mohammed Riyas. Already the existing Public Works Department (PWD) road could be either renovated or widened for the purpose of developing the coastal highway.
The easy connectivity of Beypore Port and Kochi Port by road would be to a great extent useful to container traffic, besides, enhancing infrastructure development and economic activity in the coastal region. “This project will benefit the region of Tanur, Tirur, Ponnani, Guruvayur, Nattika, Kodungallur constituencies as well,” Mr. Shamsudheen pointed out.
Previously the National Highway wing of the PWD had prepared a package to implement the proposed 75-km coastal highway project. Surveys had already been carried out for the construction of bridges at Kottakkal -Vadakara sandbanks and at Beypore. The proposal is to adopt a total width for the road at 14 metres.
Sources said that the proposal was to implement an ocean-drive highway beginning from Ponnani, passing through Tirur, Tanur, Parappanangadi, Kadalundi, Chaliyam, Beypore, Marad, Kallai, Kozhikode Beach road and culminating at Vengalam.
Thus, the distance between Kochi and Kozhikode would be reduced by nearly 40 km. However, the project failed to take off after it faced hurdles at different stages. A major reason was acquisition of land in possession of individuals as well as the State government, officials said.