Until the 1980s, the Shanmugham Road was the literal marine drive with the Kochi Lake and the adjoining Arabian Sea to its west. The present Marine Drive is one of the most significant projects that GCDA has ever undertaken. The Cochin Marine Development Scheme (CMDS) was a project that focused on the water front development. This scheme includes the land reclaimed from the Vembanad Lake during 1980s. The project was taken up by the then Cochin Town Planning Trust, the forerunner of the present GCDA. The scheme area extends from the immediate north of the Tanker Jetty upto Tata canal which is the boundary with Gosree Island Development Authority land. Sri Kuldip Singh from New Delhi was appointed as the Consultant Architect for the scheme and prepared a master plan for utilizing the area keeping provision for maximum public utility. The Government approved the first phase of the scheme as per GO (Rt) No. 3790/ LA&SWD dt 26/11/79. Later the scheme revised for the total area was approved by the Government as per GO (Rt) No.188/ 2000/ LSGD dt 13/1/2000. While preparing the scheme maximum provision of open spaces and a pathway throughout the scheme length as access to the public to the waterfront were also provided. Development of Rajendra Maidan, Childrens Park, extention of Subhash Park, Marine Drive Ground, Ferry stations and popular Walkway was made possible through this scheme. Rest of the land was earmarked for commercial and residential uses. The unique aspect of the scheme is the concept of global FAR, and is fixed as 1.7 by the Government. That is the ratio of the total built-up area to the whole scheme area as a unit is limited to 1.7. Major portion of the building construction in the scheme is almost completed. The extension of the 12m wide walkway from AWHO building, north of KINCO jetty upto the Tata canal and the ‘Kettuvallppalam’ across Railway canal was recently opened.
MARINE DRIVE SHOPPING COMPLEX
The GCDA land lying to the east of the Kinco Jetty at the High Court junction is earmarked for commercial use as per CMDS. While developing the CMDS commercial facilities as a social obligation GCDA had constructed a few bunk shops to provide for the economically and socially backward people of the society. The bunks were give on rental basis and now these bunks are in a shabby and unhygienic state and are unpleasant to view. Hence to get a face lift to this area, GCDA thought of constructing a modern high-rise commercial complex in this landmark site within the permissible limit of 1.7 global FAR.
The commercial complex will have facilities to rehabilitate the Bunk Owners in the Ground Floor and upper floors will have space for commercial use.
The extent of land owned by GCDA here is 25 cents. The proposed commercial building will have BF+GF+7 floors.The total built up area including basement is 4958.61 sq.m. and the expected cost of the project is 12crores.
A mini conference hall with a seating capacity of about 300 people, Restaurant space, Terrace Parking with car lift etc. form part of this project.