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APTDC resorts at Rushikonda will be developed, says Minister

Tourism Minister Muttamsetti Srinivasa Rao has said that a 5-star plus category resorts with world-class facilities will be constructed in place of the existingAP Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC) resorts, as per the redevelopment proposal at Rushikonda.

The existing resort has 58 rooms, a conference hall, a bar and a restaurant with a total built-up area of 4,439 sq.m. (47,764 sft.). As many as 34 rooms were constructed during 1984-89 and the new block with 24 rooms, conference hall and restaurant block were constructed during 2002-07.

After the redevelopment, which is scheduled for completion in 15 months, the new resorts will have seven blocks with a built up area of 19,968 sq.m. (2,14,856 sft.), Mr. Srinivasa Rao told a media conference here on Monday evening.

Referring to the criticism that a new site could have been chosen instead of demolishing the existing resorts, the Minister said that the location, which is right beside the road connecting to the heart of the city on one side and the upcoming International Airport at Bhogapuram on the other, is a key one. The tourism potential of the location would increase exponentially in coming years and the existing resorts would not be able to cater to the spurt in demand, he said.

The existing property generates revenue of ₹7.2 crore a year but after redevelopment the built up area would be more than 2 lakh Sft and it was estimated to generate ₹50 crore a year. The project would be taken up in two stages at a total cost of ₹164 crore.

Refuting the allegations of secrecy regarding the project, the Minister said that the G.O. was issued on March 23, this year and tenders were called and two bidders had participated. M/s D.E.C. Infrastructure and Projects India Pvt. Ltd., Hyderabad, was entrusted with the work as it quoted less than the estimated rates.

Mr. Srinivasa Rao alleged that the TDP leaders, who have hotel businesses in Visakhapatnam, were opposed to the project as they were worried that their business would be affected. The TDP leaders want the votes of the people of Visakhapatnam and North Andhra but were against the development of the region, he alleged. He appealed to them not to damage the brand image of Visakhapatnam for their vested interests.

Reiterating that Visakhapatnam has all the required potential for developing as executive capital of the State, he said that the State government was committed to development of all three regions and Amaravati would be continued as legislative capital.

Replying to queries, he said that all the employees of the APTDC resorts would be accommodated at other properties of the corporation. He added that 13 other APTDC properties in the State have been identified for redevelopment.

Mayor G. Hari Venkata Kumari was also present.

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