From workplace inclusion to green initiatives, Kochi Metro has been the frontrunner in implementing multiple programs to improve the quality of life of Kochi residents.
Read on to discover 10 interesting facts about Kochi Metro you probably didn't know (unless you’re one of the nearly 50,000 individuals already commuting on it).
1. The Most Attractive Metro Stations
Kochi Metro has, arguably, the most attractive metro stations in the country. Nature, culture, sports and history adorn the walls of every station from Aluva to Maharajas College. Each themed station portrays one aspect of Kerala – from its rich cultural heritage and maritime history to the diverse and bountiful natural beauty of the state.
It almost makes you want to get on and off at every station just to see the stunning artwork, doesn’t it?
2. Pillar Numbers for Address
Meeting friends at a new cafe along the metro line and unsure of the directions? Ask for the pillar number.
Kochiites who run businesses besides the metro have started using pillar numbers as a landmark to a road or address, instead of the actual road names.
3. First Metro in the country for...
Not only was Kochi Metro up and running in record time, but it is also, to quote the website, “the first metro system in the country with an integrated multimodal transport network”. Quite a mouthful, isn’t it?
While you may already use a combination of bus, taxi, auto rickshaw, bicycle, and even water transport to reach your destination in the city, it will all be merged into one interconnected urban transportation system courtesy Kochi Metro.
By the way, do check out this super stop-motion animation video made for Kochi Water Metro by a local digital studio.
4. You got the Kochi1 Card?
And to facilitate this integrated transportation system, Kochi Metro has launched the Kochi1 smart card which can be used to access other modes of public transport while also functioning like any other debit card. Although it has been introduced in collaboration with Axis Bank, the card can be linked with any bank account.
For frequent travelers, the Kochi1 card is a boon. You can avoid the long queues at metro station ticket counters and just tap the card at the entry gates. The RFID-enabled card will automatically deduct the fare for the ticket.
5. Online shopping to Kochi Metro?
Soon, you may be collecting your Amazon deliveries at a metro station. With the Kochi Metro Click ‘N’ Collect program, you can use the Kochi1 card to order items from major shopping portals or local stores and have it delivered at metro stations. The novel program will expand to include more goods and services from e-retailers, grocery stores, vegetable vendors, courier services and laundry services.
6. Largest crew of women
Kochi Metro has the largest crew of women to be employed by any metro, including a sizeable number of workers from Kudumbasree. It is also the first organization in the state to employ transgender persons.
Talk about workplace inclusivity!
7. Accessibility First!
Kochi Metro coaches and stations have all been thoughtfully designed with accessibility in mind.
The disabled-friendly coaches have special provision for wheelchairs and seats reserved for people with disabilities. Seats have also been reserved for pregnant women, children, women traveling with children, and the elderly.
The stations have entry and exit ramps for the wheelchair-bound and tactile paving to assist the visually impaired. There are also low window ticketing counters for children and those with disabilities.
8. Don't fight the traffic, skip it!
In a growing city like Kochi, two of the biggest problems are traffic congestion and pollution.
Kochi Metro has set out to combat these problems using innovative solutions, like the Non-Motorised Transport plan. This comprises creating safe, accessible pathways for pedestrians and bicyclists in a 2 km radius around the metro corridor. The pilot program is already underway on Shihab Thangal Road, Panampilly Nagar.
9. Oh! We have bike sharing too!
The Public Bike Sharing (PBS) scheme launched by Kochi Metro is also another way to control congestion in high traffic areas. Under this scheme, commuters can avail the use of bicycles free of cost for a maximum of 100 hours a month. This is a membership-based service, where members send an SMS when they pick up and drop the bikes quoting the bike rack code.
In an effort to reduce pollution, Kochi Metro has introduced e-rickshaws and CNG feeder buses at some stations.
10. Embracing Clean Energy!
When Kochi Airport is being run on solar energy, can Kochi Metro be far behind?
Solar rooftop panels have been installed on all metro stations and an additional ground-mounted solar project has been set up at Muttom. They also plan to mount solar panels on the Water Metro boats.
This means that in the near future we can expect more of the metro system’s energy consumption to come from a clean, renewable source.
11. Those vertical gardens are nice right? Thanks to you
Did you know that you’re contributing towards the beautification of Kochi as well? Your biodegradable waste is now being used as bio-compost to create the vertical gardens you see on metro pillars and fill the medians with plants.
Plastic Bottle Recycling Machines have been installed in some stations. On using these machines, you’ll not only get the satisfaction of having done something for the environment, but you’ll also get discount coupons valid at select food outlets and supermarkets.
What do you like about our Kochi Metro?
With all these progressive initiatives, it’s no wonder that Kochi Metro is said to be the most advanced metro system in the country.
What’s your favorite aspect of the Kochi Metro rail system?