The first private sectordriven redevelopment plan at Habibganj, near Bhopal, is expected to be flagged off by the PM shortly , paving the way for seeking private participation for the other 22 projects, most of them British-era facilities.
Bansal Construction will redevelop Habibganj station at Rs 400 crore -spending Rs 100 crore on modernising the main station and the rest on creating secondary facilities.
Apart from the 23, contracts for redevelopment of at least two stations in Delhi Anand Vihar and Bijwasan -are expected to be finalised by March, sources told TOI. Faridabad in the National Capital Region is also on the modernisation list.
Sources said the cost of re development of the 23 core station areas will be around Rs 4,000 crore, with the Centre hoping to earn at least the same amount as upfront fee from the developers that bag the rights. The overall cost of building facilities in and around the stations is expected to be around Rs 25,000 crore. A part from modernising a railway station, the private developer will also get the rights to develop surplus land near the station, including building of hotels and other facilities. The lease will be for 45 years.
While the Centre had cleared a plan to rede velop 44 stations last January, not much progress has taken place on the ground, with the development of Gandhinagar having been kicked off only this month. But that development is not driven by the private sector and is instead through a special purpose vehicle with equity from the railways and the Gujarat government.
But now, railway officers said, things have been firmed up with the Boston Consulting Group that has conducted feasibility studies for 55 stations, and 23 are ready for overhaul. The maximum number of projects are expected to be in Mumbai.
“We are not getting into an airport-like model which involved a complex maze of companies and SPVs. We are asking for upfront fee and giving the development rights,“ explained an official. The idea is to get some of the modernised stations up and running by the end of 2018 or early 2019.