The State government has decided to speed up the land acquisition process for the construction of coastal highways. The decision was taken at a meeting of district collectors convened by Public Works Minister Mohamed Riyas here on Sunday. The district collectors have been directed to appoint staff required for the land acquisition by April 30.
Land would be acquired in consultation with the people’s representatives in the areas concerned. The Kerala Road Fund Board has been directed to make available the funds required for the initial land acquisition in a time-bound manner. The progress of the project will be reviewed at regular intervals at ministerial and secretary level, said Mr. Riyas.
The Public Works Department secretary has been directed to resolve impediments during the course of land acquisition. The meeting also decided to ensure proper rehabilitation of those affected by land acquisition. The 623-km-long coastal highway with a width of 14 metres will be built to international standards with a cycle path. The Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) would provide ₹6,500 crore for the construction of the highway.
In three phases
The coastal highway project will be implemented in three phases by taking up new constructions. The existing National Highways and State Highways will be made part of the coastal highway. The proposed highway project passes through Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, and Kasaragod districts.
It will also connect major ports like Kollam, Vizhinjam, and Vallarpadam and several other smaller ports. The project also envisages strengthening of coastal development, tourism and freight movement along with public transport.