part of the two-year technical cooperation between the Transport Authority of Lyon (SYTRAL), the public company in charge of the construction and operation of the metro in Kochi, India (KMRL), the French Agency for Development (AFD) and CODATU, a team of four delegates from KMRL visited Lyon from 9th to 12th of January 2017. KMRL is currently constructing a 25km-long elevated metro line linking the Cochin Municipal Corporation with the nearby municipalities of Aluva, Kalamassery and Tripunithura, and providing a connectivity with two railway stations, the water transport service and a major mobility hub. Apart from the upcoming metro line (commercial opening expected in 2017), Kochi has a very efficient bus system with 1400 buses plying in the entire Greater Kochi Area (732km2), representing a modal share of 47%.
A technical visit to discover the integrated Public Transport network of Lyon
Lyon Public Transport network is reknown for its efficiency, its excellent integration and its diversity of modes, each mode being chosen according to the expected ridership on the mobility corridor. In Total, Lyon has four underground metro lines, five at-grade tram lines, two cable car lines, nine trolley bus lines (electric buses which draws power from over-head wires) and 118 bus lines operated with around 1000 buses.
These modes a well-integrated with plateforms of interchange such as La Soie or Part-Dieu, equipped with Park&Ride facilities, ensuring the last-mile connectivity. These aspects are of great interest for KMRL delegates who are currently in the process of setting-up such integrated network in Kochi:
- The negociation with the bus operators to reorganize the bus routes has already started;
- The water transport network is being reinforced to serve the other modes of public transport and ensure the last mile connectivity;
- The fare integration shall be made possible thanks to Kochi Mobility Card (initially developed as a metro card);
- The reflection is going on the medium-capacity modes which could complement the Mass Rapid Transir system (BRT, Tram…);
The need for a single authority setting rules and regulations for Public Transport
Lyon is also a great example of a successful Public Transport Authority which oversees the development of the network, defines the transport offer, controls the service quality (standards, regularity, cleanliness, safety…) and defines an inclusive fare policy. The presence of a single authority overseeing all public transport related developments is crucial to enable a comprehensive vision.
Kochi is currently in the process of setting-up a similar authority called Kochi Metropolitan Transport Authority (KMTA) which shall be able to (i) design, plan and finance the evolution of the network towards an integrated network, (ii) set common guidelines and standards across all modes, and (iii) formulate strong policies.
The importance of providing a high-quality public transport service
Through the visit of the depots, workshops, Operation and Security Control Centres, and the study of the Asset Management System, the intention was to show the high professionalism with which the network is being operated and maintained, to ensure a seamless experience for the users. SYTRAL has fixed very high KPI (Key Performance Indicators) in its contract with KEOLIS, to notably ensure the ponctuality and the continuity of the service at any point of time.
KMRL has opted for the in-house option, majority of the Operation and Maintenance (O&M) components being provided by KMRL itself, except for minor contracts being outsourced.
Not only a public transport project…
SYTRAL and CODATU also took the opportunity of this visit to emphasize on the importance of a joint development of urban and transport projects, to make an Public Transport project well-integrated in the urban fabric and successful. The Lyon Town Planning Agency made an interesting presentation on the whole process of pedestrianization which was taken up by Lyon Metropolis in the 90’s, in the « Presqu’ile » area. The objective was to restrict the transit traffic in the city core, improve the access by Public Transport (creating priority bus corridors), reduce the number of parking space (developing underground parkings), and provide more public spaces.
KMRL has also started the same process of urban renewal around the mobility corridor, to ensure a safe and confortable access to public transport. The first project has been inaugurated in July 2016 in the residential area of Panampilly Nagar:
For further information, read the Overview on Kochi Urban Transport System (in French).