‘In-principle nod to Kozhikode monorail project’



Kochi: Union Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath on Thursday said that the Centre has given its in-principle nod for the Rs 1600-crore monorail project in Kozhikode.

Speaking at the function in which Prime Minister Manmohan Singh laid foundation stone for the Kochi Metro project, Kamal Nath urged the state government to entrust the work of the monorail project to Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL).

Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram are the two cities in Kerala where monorails are proposed.

While a stretch of 16 km, with a construction cost of Rs 1600 crore is proposed in Kozhikode, the distance to be covered in Thiruvananthapuram will be 24 km with a construction cost of Rs 2500 crore.

The Centre will provide financial support for these projects, he said.

A monorail project has already been identified in Delhi and work has been entrusted to Delhi Metro Rail Corporation.

On this occasion, Kamal Nath urged chief ministers of all states to create a dedicated municipal cadre to ensure that government's urban infrastructure development initiatives can be made more effective and sustainable.

The government was in the process of finalising the next phase of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), and it was keen to explore innovative methods to raise resources including monetisation of land, encourage PPP and gap funding, he said.

Kamal Nath urged the state government to forward fresh projects in the second phase of JNUURM and said the Centre will provide full financial support for the same.

Pointing out that Central government was giving high priority to Metro projects, Kamal Nath said fourth generation technology will be implemented for the Kochi metro project, which is expected to be completed by 2016-17.

Kochi Metro is the first multi-modal system integrating road and inland water transport.

PTI