India will soon have a railway station that has office-cum-shopping complexes, a five-star hotel and a multi-specialty hospital.
Habibganj railway station in Madhya Pradesh’s capital, Bhopal,is slated to be the first railway station to be revamped as a public-private partnership. The redevelopment work of the station will be launched by Railway Minister, Suresh Prabhu, on Friday.
The responsibility of operation and management of the station has been assigned to the Bansal Group for 8 years. Also, 4 land parcels, summing up to a total area of 17,245 sq. m. have been given to the group on a lease of 45 years. Bansal Group is a Bhopal-based business group that operates in construction, infrastructure, education and also has a television channel.
The business group will take care of all the station facilities like power, platform maintenance, parking, food stalls, retiring rooms, etc. Core operations like ticketing, train movement and signaling haven’t, however, been privatized.
A cost of Rs. 100 crore will be incurred in the redevelopment of the station. Development of the 4 land parcels will involve a total expense of Rs. 350 crore.
The work will be done in two phases. The first phase will comprise of construction of 2 office-cum-shopping complexes. In the second phase, a multi-specialty hospital and a budget five-star hotel will be erected. The electricity to the station will be supplied by environment friendly solar panels.
The idea of setting up such a station was initiated in 2010 by Mamata Banerjee, the then Railway Minister. Prabhu has now revived the project.