The citizens of Kochi are going to have a never before experience. The authorities are pushing the envelope to build world class stations for the Kochi Metro. The stations will be eco-friendly, sensitive to the disabled & will have stunning interiors. All the 22 stations will be solar powered, and will also have the rain-water harvesting system. There are plans to bring the multi-storied stations under a single roof and use special Italian construction material so as to keep the noise at minimum.
All the stations will have amenities like elevators, escalators, ramps and engraved paths for visually challenged persons. Tactile tiles will be provided at all stations to enable the visually challenged to travel from the entrance to the platform without assistance. Adaptation of toilets for wheelchair users, Braille symbols, auditory signals in elevators, and warning signals at appropriate places are other disabled-sensitive features which will be available at stations. For hearing impaired commuters, directional, information and signage will be provided at the stations. Dynamic display giving travel information will be provided in coaches. Wheelchair bound commuters will be given separate parking facilities at the entrance. Lifts will be provided with a mirror at the rear wall to help them see the commuters waiting outside. Inside the metro coach, handrails will be provided at suitable height and designated space for commuters in wheelchairs. Platforms will be sloped at the edges to facilitate the smooth movement of wheelchairs. Separate paths will be provided for entrance to the coach.
The interiors of the Kochi Metro stations will be replete with references to Kerala’s culture and tradition. It is expected that windows will use traditional wooden frames, and murals adorning the walls will have images ranging from moments in Changampuzha’s poetry to the iconic Chinese nets. The authorities are leaving no stone unturned to ensure the safety of the stations. There will be four pumps in each corner of the metro stations for pumping fire extinguishing hydrogenates. Besides that, there will be sprinklers and other safety equipment for emergency situations. There will be two elevators for people to enter the metro station from either side. The electrical equipment will be made with flame-retardant wires. The main circuit room in each station will be fitted with carbon-di-oxide or nitrogen chemical which can resist fire. There will be fire extinguishing cylinders inside the trains to manage mishaps. However the chances for fire accidents in Kochi Metro is less, unlike Delhi Metro which operates underground, as it will be operated on an elevated structure & through open air.
No doubt it is going be a joy ride for commuters once the metro comes up.