SmartCity Kochi Phase I in eighteen months: Chief Minister

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Kochi: The first phase of the SmartCity Kochi project will be completed in 18 months in a time bound manner. This was announced by Chief Minister Shri Oommen Chandy today after laying the foundation stone for the first building of SmartCity Kochi (SCK-01). The CM along with Abdul Latif Al Mulla, Group CEO, Tecom, the promoters of the project, jointly inaugurated the SmartCity sales Pavilion building today. The Board of Directors meeting was also held there after the inauguration.

In his address, the Chief Minister justified the delay in the opening of the Pavilion building by saying that the building has more built-up space than initially planned. When the work on the SmartCity Kochi Pavilion was started in October 2011, it was a 6,000 sq. ft. building to be completed in four months. The Pavilion now has 10,000 sq. ft. but took eight months.

Giving details, he said that the first phase would involve work of 3.5 lakh sq. ft. out of the proposed 30 lakh sq. ft. and this would be completed in 18 months. The delay in the SmartCity project has resulted in a cost escalation of Rs.500 crores. The CM also said that the project will enjoy a single Special Economic Zone (SEZ) status thanks to the revise guidelines by the Union Government for SEZs. With this the entire 246 acres will receive a single SEZ status even though there is a water body separating the land into two parts.

However, on a realistic note, Al Mulla said that the first phase will be completed only in 24 months after getting all the required approvals. He added that money was not an issue in the timely completion of the project and Tecom would ensure that SmartCity Kochi becomes a preferred IT destination.

Minister for Industries & IT, Shri P K Kunhalikutty; Minister for Excise & Ports, K Babu; M A Yusuf Ali; P H Kurien IAS, Principal Secretary – IT, Gok and Dr. Baju George, MD, SmartCity Kochi were among those present today.

Kerala IT News

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