Kochi Water Metro to collaborates with IIT-Madras and CUSAT for Innovative Pontoon

Naomi Pandya Posted on: 2023-11-14 06:30:00 Viewer: 1,818 Comments: 0 Country: India City: Kochi

Kochi Water Metro to collaborates with IIT-Madras and CUSAT for Innovative Pontoon

Kochi, India (Urban Transport News): In a pioneering move, Kochi Water Metro Limited (KWML) is set to elevate the terminal infrastructure of the Fort Kochi Water Metro through a strategic collaboration with the academic prowess of IIT-Madras and Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT). The focus of this collaboration is the design and development of a state-of-the-art floating pontoon, ensuring passenger safety and stability, especially in the presence of robust currents and waves at the confluence of the Arabian Sea and backwaters.

The Water Metro ferry services, a trailblazing venture in the country, have already incorporated concrete floating pontoons at all their boat jetties. These pontoons, adept at adapting to high and low tide conditions, facilitate seamless boarding and deboarding. However, the unique geographical challenges posed by the Fort Kochi terminal, situated at the meeting point of the Arabian Sea and backwaters, demand a bespoke solution.

KWML Managing Director, Loknath Behera, emphasized the need for a distinctive pontoon design, stating, "installing normal floating pontoons would not be practical in Fort Kochi as they cannot resist the huge waves in the area. So we are planning to develop a different model exclusively for the jetty. We have started discussions with IIT-Madras and CUSAT teams and will soon take a decision regarding this."

The proposed pontoon is envisioned as a safety-centric structure, addressing the specific challenges posed by the strong waves and undercurrents in the region. The primary goal is to create a terminal infrastructure that not only ensures the safety of commuters but also enhances the stability of the terminal in adverse weather conditions.

Despite the introduction of this innovative pontoon design, KWML remains committed to its project timeline. The commissioning of the Fort Kochi terminal and the initiation of Water Metro services are still on track, with a scheduled commencement by December of this year.

KWML General Manager, Shaji Janardhanan, highlighted the distinctive features of the proposed floating pontoon, stating, "special safety features would be the specialties of the new floating pontoon. We will focus on the stability of the structure as the strong current and huge waves would be risk factors."

While the demand for increased boat services is on the rise, the frequency of Water Metro services is expected to witness a boost with the addition of more boats from Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL).

The Kochi Water Metro project stands as an integrated water transport initiative, aiming to enhance connectivity between the mainland and the islands of Kochi. Envisaging the development of 15 identified routes connecting 38 jetties across 10 islands and two boatyards, the project is set to serve over 100,000 islanders. Beyond transforming travel time within the city, it is expected to alleviate traffic congestion and reduce the city's carbon impact significantly.

As KWML pioneers innovative solutions for terminal challenges, the Kochi Water Metro project continues to represent a transformative force, poised to redefine urban connectivity and improve the lives of its residents.

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