Thiruvananthapuram–Kannur high-speed rail corridor
|Thiruvananthapuram–Kannur high-speed rail corridor|
|Native name||തിരുവനന്തപുരം - കണ്ണൂർ അതിവേഗ ഇടനാഴി|
|Owner||Kerala High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd. (KHSRC)|
|Character||Elevated, underground, surface and grade-separated, dedicated passenger tracks|
|Line length||430 km (270 mi)|
|Number of tracks||2|
|Operating speed||300 km/h (190 mph)|
Route map: Google
The Thiruvananthapuram–Kannur high-speed rail corridor was a proposed high-speed rail corridor in India that would connect the capital city of Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram with Kannur in Kerala. In February 2014, the Indian media reported that the state government had shelved the project. But during the last election manifesto ldf government included the project as a highlight and recent survey indicated that 86% of the kerala population did indeed support the project and DMRC was asked to prepare the DPR.
In July 2016, a modified plan was unveiled to construct a high-speed rail corridor from Thiruvananthapuram to Kannur.
The Thiruvananthapuram–Mangaluru high-speed rail corridor was mooted in the 2009-10 budget speech of the LDF government. The project was cleared by the State Cabinet in February 2010. The Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) was appointed as the nodal agency to develop the project.
In September 2011, a special purpose vehicle, the Kerala High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd. (KHSRC) was formed to implement the project. The Ministry of Railways has stated that the project is feasible and has expressed full support for the project. The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) conducted the pre-feasibility study of the project. The KHSRC requested the DMRC to submit a detailed project report (DPR) for the project by November 2012. However, the DPR faced several delays.
In February 2014, the Indian media reported that the state government shelved the project.The Times of India quoted unnamed sources as stating, "It has not been scrapped officially, but it is at a dead stage. The estimated project cost has almost doubled now, and the more the delay, the costlier the project would become." The cost of constructing the project was estimated to be 1.80 lakh crore, much higher than the originally estimated 1 lakh crore. 80% of the cost was proposed to be funded by JICA, and the remaining 20% by the State and Central governments.
In March 2014, T. Balakrishnan, Chairman and Managing Director of KHSRCL, denied that the project had been scrapped. In October 2014, Kerala Chief Minister Shri Oommen Chandy stated that the government wished to implement the project, and that the project was stalled due to protests. He also stated that the survey had been completed and the project would be implemented only with the support of people.
In June 2016, the newly elected Left government asked the DMRC to complete the DPR. The DMRC submitted the detailed project report (DPR) to the state government in July 2016. The DMRC proposed constructing a 430 km line from Kochuveli in Thiruvananthapuram up to Kannur, with an option to extend the line up to Mangalore in a later phase. The Union Government approved the DMRC's draft report on 9 July 2016.
In August 2016, the KHSRCL announced that it would conduct survey to determine public opinion of the proposed alignment. The survey is intended to prevent any possible protests over land acquisition and suppress dissent from opponents of development projects in the state. The results of the survey, published in February 2017, found that 86% of the 13,447 people interviewed across 110 assembly constituencies in 11 districts were in favour of the project. Only 9% of those surveyed opposed the project, while 5% remained neutral. 73% of the respondents were aware of the project before being interviewed. Of those who had not heard of the project, 82% expressed support, while 88% of those who were aware expressed support. Supporters of the project believe that it will reduce travel time, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and accidents, and generate development in the state. Opponents of the project argue that the project will result in large-scale displacement of people as a result of land acquisition, take away the livelihood of farmers whose land is acquired, waste a large sum of money, and reduce the number of trees.
|Proposed stations on the high-speed corridor|
The 430-kilometre-long high-speed corridor from Thiruvananthapuram to Kannur is proposed to be built 4–8 km east of the existing Thiruvananthapuram-Mangalore railway line. 105 km of the line will be underground, 190 km will be elevated and 135 km will be at-grade. The corridor would not have any level crossings. The distance between two pillars of the elevated rail was proposed as 25 m, and the line would run 5 m above the ground level.
The rail project will require the acquisition of 1155.57 hectares of privately owned land, the relocation of 3,868 residential areas, and the cutting of 36,923 trees. The main depot for the line will be located near the Kochuveli terminus.
Trains are expected to operate a maximum speed of 300 km/h and an average of speed of 250 km/h. The end-to-end travel time on the line will be 2 hours. The proposed stations are Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Chengannur, Kottayam, Kochi, Thrissur, Valancheri, Kozhikode, and Kannur. The corridor also contains a provision to establish an additional station at Nedumbassery.
The entire project is estimated to cost ₹127,849 crore (US$18 billion), of which the Kerala Government will pay ₹17,272 crore (US$2.4 billion). The DMRC expects that the project would take 9 years to complete once it receives all necessary approvals from the Central and State Governments.
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- "'High-speed rail to take Kochi-Kasaragod route'". The Hindu. 14 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2014.
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- Radhakrishnan, S. Anil (2 February 2017). "Kerala gives a thumbs up to high-speed rail". The Hindu. Retrieved 6 February 2017.
- TNN 17 Sep 2012, 05:18 am IST (2012-09-17). "Survey for high-speed rail sparks local ire". The Times of India. Retrieved 2013-03-11.
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