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Old 5th February 2018, 17:30   #11116
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by sandeep3in View Post
Can someone share the condition of road from Muvatupuzha to Kottayam, the MC road was under repair not sure if it had been completed.
Not sure about Kottayam, but it's awesome from Muvatupuzha to Koothattukulam.
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Old 6th February 2018, 09:48   #11117
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
The two statements clearly sum it up. You cannot avoid traffic in peak hours. But you can avoid peak hours itself! There is no other solution to this problem.
No second way about it, even I have changed my starting time from Bangalore to Thrissur to 3AM which was little after 4AM during 2010 then to 3:30 and now 3 AM looks like a sweet spot.

Quote:
Also I notice crossing Salem does not seem to be that big a problem. Hopefully everything gets completed fast.
Salem was never been an issue for me for recently or from the time they had started bridge construction. It is getting executed very well.

Quote:
Also I dont know if there is a capacity/traffic issue on the Bangalore - Kerala railway line. They can definitely offer 2-3 services per day (some via Bangarpet/Jolarpet and some via Hosur/Dharmapuri). That should really help the weekend rush. But its the same problem. What if for rest of the days these services dont yield revenue?
Even I can't comment on the traffic nor the rake availability especially for South Western Railway zone. If you take the same case from Chennai to Kerala there are more than 10 trains in a day which is more than twice that we see from Bangalore.
Also in similar lines the number of intercity travels bus from Chennai to Kerala is relatively way less when compared from Bangalore because there are good number of train from Chennai. Also the higher count on existing bus service from Bangalore should be looked as a good sign of demand. So shouldn't be much of a concern when it comes to train occupancy during weekdays in my opinion.
Cheers!

Last edited by treadmark : 6th February 2018 at 09:50.
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Old 6th February 2018, 11:35   #11118
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
You cannot avoid traffic in peak hours. But you can avoid peak hours itself!
I have taken this to the extreme - I nowadays leave Bangalore in the afternoon of the previous day (say for weekend travel, Friday afternoon). I leave office a couple of hours early and try to cross Attibele a bit before 5 PM (or take the Attibele-avoiding route via Sarjapur-Bagalur). This results in me entering Kerala after 9 PM when all traffic would have subsided, and home around 1-2 AM.

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Also I dont know if there is a capacity/traffic issue on the Bangalore - Kerala railway line.
Apart from Bangalore-Hosur-Salem being a single line section, the usual railway excuse is the capacity constraints within Kerala itself, especially between Shornur and Ernakulam:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...w/46389727.cms

On the other hand, if you read the vernacular press you cannot help thinking there is a bit of step-motherly attitude towards Kerala. Let us hope the newly setup KRDCL helps (though as per most reports Kerala is bankrupt and will find it tough to raise the 50% cost sharing commitment for all new rail projects within the state).
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Old 6th February 2018, 11:51   #11119
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

A little off topic here.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Also I dont know if there is a capacity/traffic issue on the Bangalore - Kerala railway line. They can definitely offer 2-3 services per day (some via Bangarpet/Jolarpet and some via Hosur/Dharmapuri). That should really help the weekend rush. But its the same problem. What if for rest of the days these services dont yield revenue?
This article kind of sums up the sorry state of affairs on train connectivity to Kerala.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...w/62386600.cms


If you see below, there are only 7 trains to South Kerala.

All Roads to Kerala-traintimings.png
  • Only 3 are daily trains and one is a day train. So only 2 run on Friday Night from Bangalore.
  • Considering to the state capital, the number reduces further. Compared to this, most capitals have more than 10-15 trains. (Shown in the figure below)
  • Rest of them run on odd days and odd times.
  • The 2 Ernakulam weekly trains now terminate at Banaswadi as opposed to City. Accessibility to Banaswadi especially with respect to public transport is pretty poor.
  • North Kerala is even worse with only one daily train and a weekly train that leaves Sunday midnight from Bangalore.

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Even during festival season/long weekends or other peak times there are no special services introduced. So no surprise that whoever can drive takes the car and heads out.

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
But its the same problem. What if for rest of the days these services dont yield revenue?
They can easily offer weekly services that runs on Fridays. Also, from experience-a train to Kerala will never run empty. .
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Old 6th February 2018, 11:51   #11120
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by sandeep3in View Post
Can someone share the condition of road from Muvatupuzha to Kottayam, the MC road was under repair not sure if it had been completed.
Roads are in great condition all the way through. Road markings are pending on some stretches between Muvatupuzha & Koothatukulam - other than that, smooth sailing all the way.

Traffic will be on the higher side at Etumanoor, and once you enter Kottayam - repair works at Nagampadom bridge, and Baker junction.
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Old 6th February 2018, 12:10   #11121
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajeevraj
If you see below, there are only 7 trains to South Kerala.
Sir, have not read your post and attachments in detail. But IMHO, trains cannot be compared to buses on a number-to-number basis. That is 100 buses run to Kerala, where as only 7 trains run. A better analysis would be to have the number of trains arriving at PGT (being the border) to Kerala, from other parts of India in a time period of 24 hours. When we know the number of trains plying into Kerala from one direction (towards PGT), we can also understand that they are all landing up here using just two sets of tracks from JTJ side. There is no other way they can land up in PGT.

I don't know if the TrainEnquiry web site has some sort of a facility to share the details of trains arriving at a specific station, during a specific time frame. But would make some checks .

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Originally Posted by treadmark
Also the higher count on existing bus service from Bangalore should be looked as a good sign of demand. So shouldn't be much of a concern when it comes to train occupancy during weekdays in my opinion.
Quote:
Originally Posted by binand
On the other hand, if you read the vernacular press you cannot help thinking there is a bit of step-motherly attitude towards Kerala. Let us hope the newly setup KRDCL helps (though as per most reports Kerala is bankrupt and will find it tough to raise the 50% cost sharing commitment for all new rail projects within the state).
On the train v/s bus issues on Kerala travel, I feel there are very many other problems. Yes, today there are 100s of buses which ply to Kerala every evening. The buses have one advantage, they have their routes aligned to have maximum pick up points and generally each bus company need not answer to any one else. The current layout of the city is also favouring buses (and bus passengers).

Trains do not have such luxuries. The railway line leading to Kerala is not an exclusive route, railways need to accomodate other trains to other destinations as well. For example any train leaving from SBC, YPR to PGT,SRR,ERS will have to share the same set of tracks (two tracks) till TPT or JTJ; with trains leaving SBC,YPR to MAS, AJJ and even further to HWH. And from TPT onwards the trains leaving for Kerala, would have to share their run with many other trains coming into Kerala from MAS and even beyond. Again tracks from TPT till ERS are double tracks (from there till CAPE it is patchy). And leave alone mail/express trains, these tracks gets shared with goods train as well. So more than say arranging extra rakes to run trains, the more immediate problem would be to identify time slots to get this train to run through. It is like playing an old video game, you have many things being thrown at you, but you need to dodge them and still get going.

Now we may ask the question on how special trains are being run. Special trains are run on slots ear-marked for goods trains. Often you also see the locos fit for goods trains (WDG, WAG series) being used to pull these special trains. Since special trains do not operate beyond a few days this is okay.

In Kerala, there are more problems:-
1. People expect the trains to reach Kerala at morning hours, preferably after 5:00AM. So when railways schedule trains, they need to try to meet this condition to the maximum extent.
2. Due to political pressure every mail/express train stops at every 'big' station which could be just 10-12 kms away from each other. This would make the entire operation become slower and slower.
3. The signalling system in Kerala (much like in majority of the train routes), is the "Tokenless block system". In this system, every station master has a set of signals to control (and LC gates to be opened & closed). Now they are also not the decision makers. Which train gets priority to move forward, which train gets pulled to the siding; all are decided by "Section Controllers" who sit at the Div.HQ. They have control charts to track progress and control phones to instruct each station master on what to do. These are all manual processes. Where ever trains run very close to each other, or there are large number of trains the railways have moved to the "Automatic Block System" (eg: Chennai & Mumbai suburban railway networks). Such a system needs to be put up in entire KL.
4. The railways say that a train is crossing a railway station in KL, pretty much every 15 mins. There is high pressure on LC gate keepers, and station masters to ensure that the trains dont get delayed and can also run safely. Only solution would be to increase capacity by laying one or more new track. For that huge money is required. Railways have categorically said that the respective state governments should also push in funds. Kerala is bankrupt, and cannot pay up. Kerala politicians would blame every other group except themselves, but the net result is that nothing is changing on the ground.

An area where KL should improve is to be a "willing partner, in mutually beneficial scheme". KA government have now reached an agreement with the GoI to share costs for the Bengaluru suburban network. Politics aside, such a scheme would benefit every one around. The old concept of going to the Central Govt. with a laundry list of demands, without doing proper home work, and not as a partner may not work in the current environment.

Last edited by sachinpk : 6th February 2018 at 12:15. Reason: Added response to Rajeevraj.
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Old 6th February 2018, 12:19   #11122
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
A little off topic here.


This article kind of sums up the sorry state of affairs on train connectivity to Kerala.


If you see below, there are only 7 trains to South Kerala.

Even during festival season/long weekends or other peak times there are no special services introduced. So no surprise that whoever can drive takes the car and heads out.



They can easily offer weekly services that runs on Fridays. Also, from experience-a train to Kerala will never run empty. .
As far as my knowledge goes, train connectivity between Bangalore to Chennai , Bangalore to Hubli is alone worth talking about. There is also a demand for an overnight train to Trichy but SWR seems to be thinking different. I guess the bus lobby is playing a significant role here.
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Old 6th February 2018, 16:20   #11123
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by suresh_gs View Post
I guess the bus lobby is playing a significant role here.
thinking that there is no role for these guys vis-a-vis poor number of KL trains, and that SWR are white angels, would win us "naivety of the year" award, notwithstanding all the valid reasons @sachinpk posted.
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Old 7th February 2018, 09:39   #11124
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Guys, what is the best route to take from Madurai to Thrissur? Madurai - Dharapuram - Pollachi or the longer Madurai - Dindigul - Avinashi - Walayar? Google map shows an increase of 50KM on the avinashi route but the time mentioned is about the same. I know that the Dindigul Pollachi is single lane undivided all the way till wadakkanchery.
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Old 7th February 2018, 09:50   #11125
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by ike View Post
Guys, what is the best route to take from Madurai to Thrissur? Madurai - Dharapuram - Pollachi or the longer Madurai - Dindigul - Avinashi - Walayar? Google map shows an increase of 50KM on the avinashi route but the time mentioned is about the same. I know that the Dindigul Pollachi is single lane undivided all the way till wadakkanchery.
What time is your start? If you are driving the undivided highway at night, it may be better to use 4 lane highways. If its early morning, I would take the Pollachi route.

During day time, Kerala side single lane roads get crowded and will be slow to cover. Those roads are narrow too.
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Old 7th February 2018, 10:03   #11126
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Originally Posted by arjithin View Post
What time is your start?
Plan is to start from Madurai in the afternoon. I'm driving from Chennai - Srirangam - Rameswaram - Madurai - Thrissur - Chennai. So early morning start from Rameswaram to reach madurai and then cover the all important Madurai Meenakshi temple and onward to Thrissur. I really detest driving at night and might stay in Madurai if it gets too late.
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Old 7th February 2018, 10:21   #11127
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

How is the road condition from Guruvayoor to Kochi? Planning to cover this around 9-10AM this saturday. Is it better to opt via kunnamkulam, thrissur towards kochi?
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Old 7th February 2018, 10:56   #11128
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by sujithsidhardha View Post
How is the road condition from Guruvayoor to Kochi? Planning to cover this around 9-10AM this saturday. Is it better to opt via kunnamkulam, thrissur towards kochi?
Route via Chavakkad-Kodungallur-N.Paravur-Edappalli would be shorter, but is quite narrow at most places.
Thrissur option gives you the luxury of 4 lane highway for most part, albeit with numerous signals.
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Old 7th February 2018, 11:22   #11129
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Route via Chavakkad-Kodungallur-N.Paravur-Edappalli would be shorter, but is quite narrow at most places.
Thrissur option gives you the luxury of 4 lane highway for most part, albeit with numerous signals.
I know the routes. I need to know about the the road condition? How is the tarmac and potholes? Any maintenance recently?
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Old 7th February 2018, 12:13   #11130
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Originally Posted by sujithsidhardha View Post
I know the routes. I need to know about the the road condition? How is the tarmac and potholes? Any maintenance recently?
In general the state highways of Kerala are reasonably well maintained. Though I haven't been to Guruvayur for several months I don't think you have any reason to worry if you take the Thrissur-Aluva-Kochi route. Traffic is a different matter though.
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