KMRL probing ways to increase metro footfall
Agency mulls restructuring of fares, discounted parking fees for normal passengers
Faced with every day loss skyrocketing to roughly ₹1 crore, Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) is probing ways to attain operational break even, together with by providing fare discount to common commuters and others in a bid to woo them to use the system of mass speedy transport.
The metro company is contemplating just a few brief and long-term proposals on this regard, together with restructuring of fares, geared toward wooing commuters to Kochi metro as soon as the resurgent pandemic subsides. Its director board has to vet and ratify the proposals and solutions from varied quarters. A choice is awaited after the Assembly ballot outcomes are introduced, knowledgeable sources stated.
A considerable discount in fare and allied gives had resulted in footfall crossing the 1-lakh mark, in 2019 finish. This in flip lessened congestion on roads beneath the metro hall.
As a preliminary step, KMRL has envisaged integration of autorickshaws, buses, shared bicycles and the 23-strong Water Metro ferry fleet within the Kochi-1 card that’s awaiting upgradation, it’s learnt.
This is anticipated to be a win-win scenario for the metro, different modes of commute and commuters who’ve been craving for seamless integration amongst completely different modes of public transport.
Back in 2017, an opinion survey carried out amongst 1,484 commuters by a city-based consultancy agency had proven that they needed reducing of fares, season tickets and college students’ concession (31% of commuters then had been college students), to improve patronage for the metro which was then restricted to the 12-km Aluva-Palarivattom hall.
Sixty-one per cent of them stated they wished to journey within the metro on daily basis.
It was additionally discovered that solely 3% commuters had been daily-wage earners (who’re very acutely aware of the fare construction) not like in most different metros within the nation the place their quantity is extra.
KMRL can also be learnt to have mooted multi-level parking facilities in Aluva and Edappally, the place it has spare land, in a bid to appeal to extra passengers.
Their technical and financial feasibility have to be studied. Regular passengers and people who avail of month-to-month cross may even be provided discounted parking fees, it’s learnt.
With income from ticket sale nosediving due to the pandemic, KMRL is probing ways to increase different income sources.
The pandemic has resulted in lower than anticipated response to expression of curiosity (EOIs) floated to garner income from land and business/retail house accessible with the metro company.
A method on this regard is being labored out. Work on the bold Bliss City challenge mooted in 17 acres authorities land in Kakkanad too is a non-starter due to this motive.
The lull in patronage due to the pandemic and insufficient footfall even earlier than it struck has thrown a spanner within the metro company’s plans to mop income from non-ticketing sources, together with from station naming rights and ads in trains and at stations.