Karaparamba Junction, an intersection on the Kozhikode mini bypass and the Balussery State highway, is now one of the biggest traffic bottlenecks in Kozhikode city.
The narrow 1-km-long Karaparamba-Karikkamkulam stretch on the Balussery State highway disrupts traffic not just during peak morning and evening hours but also at other times. And, the traffic police have a tough time controlling vehicles at Karaparamba Junction even as commuters negotiate choke points from Karikkamkulam junction.
The authorities say too many people behind the wheel, especially after easing of pandemic restrictions, has resulted in a similar or even worse chaotic situation before the pandemic.
A major reason is that five roads converge at Karaparamba Junction, and the Karaparamba-Karikkamkulam stretch on the Balussery State highway has not been widened as yet. At the same time, Karaparamba-Eranhipalam, Karaparamba-Kunduparamba and Karaparamba-West Hill Chungam were widened using funds from the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB).
People’s Road from Karaparamba to East Hill Road was developed under the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Rural Transformation (Amrut) project.
City planners say the mushrooming shopping centres in the Karaparamba-Karikkamkulam corridor has made driving more dangerous. The diversions towards Krishnan Nair Road, Civil Station from Government Homeopathy College, and the LIC Housing Colony are adding to commuters’ woes. These are apart from the narrow roads leading to the Karaparamba Bazaar and the parallel road running via Canoly canal.
The signal system provided by the Vadakara-based Uralungal Labour Contract Cooperative Society (ULCCS) is not used properly. It is learnt that the signal system had not yielded the desired results.
To put an end to the chronic problem, the State government had decided to conceive a ₹80-crore project to widen the 20-km road from Karaparamba to Balussery a year ago. “The stretch from Karaparamba to Kakkodi bridge will be converted into four-lane, and the remaining will be two-lane,” said A. Pradeepkumar, MLA, Kozhikode North.
He added that land acquisition procedures had already started with the survey in progress. “However, a few more notifications are required to kick-start the acquisition. Also, we expect KIIFB to fund the project, ” he said.