The railways need Rs 3,600-crore to provide world-class facilities at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), said Kul Bhushan, Central Railway general manager, on Friday.
Bhushan, who was in Nagpur for an official tour, said only after the CST makeover project starts can the Central Railway (CR) think about providing similar world-class facilities at Pune and Nagpur railway stations.
As part of a major initiative by the Union government, the railway ministry is redeveloping a few important railway stations in the country with world-class amenities.
CST, being the first major railway station developed by the British Raj, is one of the first stations identified by the ministry to be upgraded.
The plans include construction of shops and restaurants for commuters, a 100-ft-tall polygonal dome, and a space frame encompassing all the buildings.
An attempt is also being made to decongest the heritage structure. Some buildings like the parcel and cargo offices, which house the Railway Protection Force and a few other structures, will be demolished.
On November 10, 2010, the railway board had given an in-principle approval to renovate the heritage structure. As per the plan, CR would “make renovations without touching” the Unesco World Heritage building. Railway officials will soon meet a government panel to finalise the draft agreement to make CST a world-class station.
Primary studies on how to make convert terminus, the headquarters of CR, into a world-class railway station have been completed. But as the amount required for the makeover is huge, railway officials are treading cautiously.
As the plan will be executed on public-private partnership basis, the officials will first have to find a investor who is ready to pump that kind of money in the project because the party will also concentrate on recovering the investment, Bhushan pointed out.
On security at Nagpur railway station, Bhushan said tenders for an integrated security system would be floated soon. It will be implemented this year and be completed in 2012.
NS Kasturirangan, general manager of SE Central Railway, who was also in Nagpur on Friday, hinted that the railway ministry was expected to clear the proposal for a third line between Rajnandgaon (Chhattisgarh)-Nagpur and Nagpur-Wardha.
“Work on the third line between Durg-Rajnandgao has begun. It may go beyond Nagpur, but I am not the right person to comment,” said Kasturirangan.