First smart road in Thiruvananthapuram likely by February

Work on multi-utility ducts, storm water drains progressing on stretch in Fort area

The first of the smart roads in the capital under the Smart City project of the city Corporation is expected to be completed by February next year, according to officials. The works have been progressing on a stretch of road in the Fort area, where site surveys have been completed and the construction of multi-utility ducts and storm water drains is ongoing.

In this phase of the project, consisting mainly of Corporation roads, an amount of ₹104 crore will be spent on a total of 9.87 kilometres of road. All cables, including electrical utility cables, telecom cables, digital TV cables and optical fibre cables will be shifted to the utility ducts in the entire stretch.

In three phases

The major component of the smart road project will be the 36.94 kilometres of roads under the Public Works Department and the Kerala Road Fund Board in the core city area. The project is expected to be completed in February 2023. The first two tender calls were unsuccessful and no construction company was chosen for the project. It was later divided into three parts — phase 1 and 2, phase 3, phase 4 — and tenders called separately.

The phase 1 and 2 of the project were awarded to NA Construction Private Limited for ₹136.96 crore. The same company has taken up the contract for the phase 3 of the project at a cost of ₹141.84 crore. The phase 4 of the project has been taken up by R.K. Madani and company at a cost of ₹147.5 crore. The survey work on these projects are progressing.

Execution delayed

All projects envisaged under the Smart City project have already been tendered, but execution has been a problem with multiple roadblocks since last year, beginning with the first COVID-19 lockdown, the two extended periods in which model code of conduct were in force for the local body and Assembly elections, the most recent lockdown due to COVID-19, and the heavy summer showers.

The execution of some of the major projects, including the multi-level car parking lot in Thampanoor, the renovation work at the Connemara market in Palayam and Smart Roads have already begun.

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