Kochi Collector Follows True Democracy, to Hold ‘Open House’ to Sort Traffic Woes

This will be done to collect the opinion and suggestions from the citizens and stakeholders in the development of the city, to work out an appropriate traffic diversion plan.

A true democracy is one where the citizens are actively made part of the governance mechanism, and their suggestions are taken into account to bring about changes.

However, what we have observed, time and again, is how most politicians across the country, who once vowed to resolve our issues and grievances, rarely stick to their word after the elections.

Straying out of this trend and for a good cause is the Ernakulam district administration, which will host an ‘open house’ next week.

This will be done to collect the opinion and suggestions from the citizens and stakeholders in the development of the city, to work out an appropriate traffic diversion plan in connection with the construction of the new flyover at Vyttila.

Barricades at the NH stretch in Vyttila. Source: Facebook.

The construction activities of the flyover project had already been adding to the traffic woes at the busiest junction in the city, but the barricading of the NH stretch at Vyttila was the last straw that broke the collective back of the public, and the district administration received severe criticism and complaints for this move.

In order to resolve the issue in a way that the work goes on and the public is not inconvenienced as well, K Mohammed Y Safeerulla, the District Collector, has come up with the idea of organising the open house where anyone can come forward and submit suggestions and recommendations.

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“On the basis of the opinions gathered, we will take a final decision on traffic regulations after consulting the various departments concerned,” he said to The New Indian Express.

The open house will be conducted at the Collectorate on Monday. This intervention is quite farsighted on the collector’s part, as only the elementary work of the project has commenced at present and that alone is causing a lot of uproar.

Through the suggestions, the district administration intends to focus on resolving the traffic crisis as the work proceeds to its second phase, i.e., the actual construction of the ₹86-crore flyover.

With a length of 850m and a height of 8m, the flyover work is expected to greatly increase the traffic congestion, unless a concrete traffic deviation strategy is chalked out.

Severe Traffic Congestion at Vytilla. Source: Facebook.

In the meantime, measures have already been employed on the collector’s command to ease the traffic influx at Vyttila Junction.

The signal junction towards Thammanam junction has been closed, no ‘U-Turns’ are allowed in the area, and the vehicles heading from Vyttila Junction and Kadavanthra and going towards Mobility Hub and Eroor side are directed to enter the service road through the Ponnurunni railway underpass.

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Besides that, vehicles can enter the Kaniyampuzha Road through RSAC Road, which has been directed to only entertain one-way traffic. The buses shuttling between Kaniyampuzha and Kadavanthra side will have to enter the Mobility Hub and exit in a regular manner. Keeping commuters in mind, electric posts at various locations across Vyttila junction are proposed to be shifted to more convenient areas.

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

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