Kochi: A high-level meeting convened by district collector P.I. Sheikh Pareeth, in which various stakeholders including NHAI, PWD, police, MLAs, and the merchant’s union participated, has decided to take urgent steps to decongest Edapally. These steps include: developing the junction using government land, construction of a skywalk, erecting barricades and banning U-turns.
“These are only interim steps as a master plan is being prepared for the development of the junction as part of Kochi Metro rail project,” said the collector.
The meeting also decided to restrict the entry to LuLu Mall, mostly through NH 17. U-turn will not be allowed at the junction and vehicles coming from the direction of Aluva should come through the Container Road to reach Cheranalloore, leading to the mall. However, vehicles coming from the city or from Palarivattom will be allowed to enter the mall on NH 47.
“The junction will be developed for 200 metres on both sides, using the government land. Entry of pedestrians to the mall will be regulated through barricades. However, there will be enough zebra crossings to facilitate pedestrians’ movement. In the next phase, a skywalk will be constructed to ease the passage of pedestrians crossing the road,” the collector said.
Lane traffic discipline will be ensured by setting road markings along the 200-metre stretch on all four directions from the junction. As the purpose of a free left is often not served, strict measures would be taken to ensure free movement of vehicles coming from Aluva to Vyttila and vehicles coming from the city to NH 17.
“All hoardings and billboards in the junction creating hurdles to the free movement of vehicles, will be removed,” said Jamal Manakkadan, Kalamassery municipal chairman. City police commissioner K.G. James said that parking would not be permitted along the national highways and more traffic wardens would be deployed soon.
Meanwhile, the mall authorities have agreed to reschedule the mall timings from 8.30 in morning to 11 at night.