Bhubaneswar: Taking cue from a successful initiative of Tent City Narmada in Gujarat, Odisha Government has now started the process for setting up year-round eco-cottages at selected destinations.
Feasibility of developing such facilities at Hirakud, Baliput (Satkoshia), Paradeep, Dringibadi, Pati Sonapur and Koraput was discussed at length in a meeting chaired by Chief Secretary S C Mahapatra..
It was decided to pilot the intervention with two destinations like Hirakud of Sambalpur district and Baliput ( Satkoshia) of Cuttack district.
Principal Secretary Tourism and Sports Vishal Dev appraised that around six acres of land have already been identified at each of these two spots. Investment of around Rs.6.25 crore was estimated against each destination for the works like land development, landscaping and set up of ecologically suitable and sustainable cottages.
Chief Secretary also directed the departments of Tourism, Water Resource, Forest and Environment to identify other such destinations, and, protect the Government land there for future development.
Considering State’s potential for year-round eco-retreat activities, Chief Secretary Mr.Mahapatra directed to design, develop and maintain the cottages on PPP mode with credible private partners having experience in the trade.
He also said that Government would provide all supports like viable gap funding for setting up the cottages, infrastructural support like road, power and water etc. The private partner would also be provided handholding support for availing different statutory permissions. It was decided to select private partners through appropriate open bidding process and to involve them as a stake holder from beginning of the projects.
The meeting deliberated on feasibility of Further, Tourism department was also directed to lease out various tourism properties like Panthanivas and Road Side Amenity centers developed by Government, and, operationalize those through operation and management (O&M) partners.
Development Commissioner Pradeep Kumar Jena clarified that the real objective of Government behind running these projects is to provide facilities to the tourists and travelers.