Techies Urge Kerala Government to Improve Infrastructure Around Technopark
One of the largest information technology parks in India, Technopark in Trivandrum, Kerala, is an IT park that was launched in 1990 and presently houses more than 300 companies. A delegation of techies, businessmen, and industrialists has recently petitioned the government to come up with steps to improve the infrastructure around the technology park.
Technopark was created with an aim to encourage and develop high-technology industries in the state. Begun in the year 1995, the IT park has progressively increased in strength and size. Home to several IT companies, nearly 47,000 professionals comprise the workforce of Technopark. In such a scenario, the delegation urged the government to improve the existing infrastructure surrounding Technopark.
Technopark-Facts and Figures
An autonomous society promoted by the Government of Kerala, Technopark could be called the IT hub of the state. The park is spread over 340 acres of land and boasts of more than 300 IT and ITES companies. About 47,000 IT professionals operate from offices located in Phases I, II, and III in the Kollam campus, adjacent to University of Kerala Kariavattom campus. A state-of-the-art integrated township called Techno City is being planned at Pallipuram, which is 5 km away from Technopark.
Technopark was conceptualized to provide a world-class working environment to IT industries and professionals. With about 1.5 million sq. ft. of built-up space, the park has seven buildings named after different rivers of Kerala, apart from independent private buildings and a convention centre. Technopark also offers facilities like a club, shopping mall, restaurants, sporting facilities, gymnasium, and a guesthouse.
Recently, a delegation consisting of representatives discussed the need for upgrading the transportation infrastructure around Technopark. The representatives specifically addressed the issue of absence of flyovers and underpasses in the ongoing four-laning project of National Highway (NH) 66. The four-laning project of NH 66 extends over a stretch of 43 km starting from Kazhakuttam to Inchivila. However, the delegation pointed out the lack of flyovers or underpasses along the stretch from Kazhakuttam to Akkulam Bridge, which would lead to clogging of the lanes as people would have to take U-turns at different locations to enter and exit the Technopark campus.
The representatives also believed that the proposed width of the four-lane NH-66 would be insufficient to handle the massive traffic volume seen across the 4.5km stretch from Kazhakuttom junction. This includes the three phases of Technopark, campuses of Infosys, UST Global, and Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC).
The delegation stressed on the importance of flyovers and underpasses in the four-laning project of NH-66 in order to decrease the traffic congestion in that stretch. Additionally, they wanted the Light Metro lines to be re-routed through the Technopark Phases I, II ,and III and extend them up to Kochuveli Rail Terminal and Trivandrum International Airport.
With expanding businesses and increasing growth of companies in and around Technopark, it is natural that the traffic load during peak hours is only going to explode, unless appropriate measures are undertaken. The representatives explained that the solution to the decongestion of the traffic lies in incorporating flyovers, underpasses, and Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) in the four-laning project.
The urgency of clearing traffic clogs to ensure smooth transportation infrastructure around Technopark is not only to provide sufficient transportation but also to combat competition from other Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities, which may provide better transportation infrastructure. The state would face tough competition from Tier 1 cities like Bengaluru and Gurgaon and Tier 2 cities like Jaipur, Visakhapatnam, and Coimbatore, which offer better transportation facilities like metro rails and flyovers.
The delegation, comprising the heads of Gtech, CII Kerala, Chamber of Commerce, and senior officials of UST Global and Oracle India, concluded that improved infrastructure would help the ongoing business developments, real estate market, as well as the Technopark, a cut above other IT destinations.
Contributed by: Smt. Pavrithra