Kochi: The state assembly on Thursday passed the much-awaited Kerala Metropolitan Transport Authority (KMTA) Bill paving the way for declaring Thiruvanantha-puram, Kochi and Kozhikode as urban mobility areas and forming unified metropolitan transport authorities in each of them. The authority will be responsible for the regulation of the development, operation, maintenance, monitoring, supervision and the provision of urban transport in these cities.
The KMTA will be an independent institution consisting of 15 members, chaired by the transport minister. Transport secretary will be the vice-chairman and government officials and transport experts will be members. Representatives from all stakeholder agencies such as mayors, MLAs and panchayat presidents will be members in the respective cities.
Integration of different modes of transport, seamless ticketing, fare revision, renovation of bus transport system and other activities will come under KMTA. Parking policy, intelligent transport facility and other amenities will also come under it.
As per the Union government mandate, every city with a metro rail service should have a metropolitan transport authority to monitor, coordinate and control the transport.
"KMTA will be a boon for the Kochi residents," said Alkesh Kumar Sharma, managing director, Kochi Metro Rail Limited.
"KMRL's goal is to provide a smart, green and integrated transport. We hope that the new bill will transform the transport sector in urban areas in Kerala," he said.
The bill was introduced in assembly about three years ago and was referred to the select committee which sought public opinion in three cities and made necessary amendments.
The government has made consultations with functionaries in other global cities where similar authorities are functioning before finalising the bill....