VUDA has kick-started plans to turn the whole stretch of Beach Road into a tourist hub. While INS Kursura is enough of an attraction already, the upcoming TU-142 aircraft museum and more will be some of the upcoming tourist attractions along the beach road.
Reportedly, the entire stretch will be secured by CCTV surveillance and VUDA has issued a request for proposal (RfP). They have invited architectural, landscape and design consultancies to prepare the master, infrastructure and design plans for the area of the beach front opposite Kursura museum. The last date for submission of the same is April 28. The presentation of technical and financial bid openings of proposals will be held on May 2. So far five aspirants have submitted RfPs.
The tourist attractions to adorn the Beach Road include the already established Kursura Museum, AU Convention Centre, Rajiv Smruthi Bhavan and the war memorial which will gel with the upcoming TU-142 aircraft museum, a visitors’ centre consisting of a ticket counter, waiting areas, souvenir shops, cafeteria, toilets, and interpretive centre with interactive visualisation shows. Plants will be put in place that will flower round the year and the landscaping will be done keeping in mind the sea front. A multi-level parking will come up for 300 cars and 200 bikes, along with an AC plant and power house.
Consultants will deliver concept plans before anything is finalised. “Tourists flock to the city beach in particular and the government is planning to make Vizag as one of the international tourist destinations by including unique tourism projects, including the recent TU-142 aircraft museum. For this purpose, the VUDA is venturing into the a new realm of development model taking care of the design, development, revenue generation for operation and maintenance in a manner that is socially, economically and environmentally sustainable,” a VUDA official reportedly said.
While all is said and done, it is a well-known fact that the Beach Road stretch is a key nesting ground for Olive Ridley turtles. They come to lay their eggs by the beach and the eggs are protected by government of AP and VSPCA before the hatched turtles are released back into the sea. While with the INS Kursura Museum, a nesting ground has already been said to be lost, it begs to question if the turtles’ nesting grounds are even being kept in mind while all these development plans are being made.