KOCHI: The Water Metro service on High Court-Vypeen route has evoked warm response among the public on the first day of its commercial operation on Wednesday. According to Kochi Water Metro Limited (KWML) authorities a total of 6,559 persons travelled in the boats on the first day of service.As the Water Metro’s High Court terminal witnessed heavy rush of commuters, the KWML authorities were forced to deploy additional staff from the KMRL for crowd management at the terminal entrance, AFC gate area and pontoon entrance area. Hundreds of people were seen standing in long queues to get into the boats, as the crowd thronged into the terminal area to experience the Water Metro journey on the first day itself.M R Rajendran, a senior advocate in the city was the first passenger from Vypeen while activist Rajeev Palluruthy was the first traveller from the High Court terminal on Wednesday. Kavya J, a student in the city, travelled first using the mobile QR ticket service available in Water Metro. MD (KWML and KMRL) Loknath Behera also joined the first service of the commercial operation.“The journey was a good experience. Apart from the regular travellers, the services can attract a large number of tourists also. Authorities should promote the project to attract more tourists,” said Abhijith, one of the members of a student-group that came to experience the boat journey on the first day itself. Modern facilities inside the air-conditioned boat and neat terminals can attract more people than the travellers of boat services of the state transport department, said Kailas, another member of the student group. Kavitha, a Kodungallur native, who travelled in the boat, said the journey was an exciting experience.The service on the second route of Water Metro from Vyttila to Kakkanad would begin on Thursday. It is expected that this route will be beneficial to the people of Kakkanad and for those working in Infopark.“In the initial days, the boats would be operated in this route only during peak hours. The boats will operate from 8 am to 11 am and from 4pm to 7pm. There will be three trips each in the morning and evening hours. The ticket rate for this route would be Rs 30. The estimated travel time from Vyttila Water Metro terminal to Kakkanad terminal is around 25 minutes. To ensure last mile connectivity, feeder buses and autos have been arranged from Kakkanad Water Metro terminal to Infopark”, the KWML authorities informed.