Given its prominence as a religious and educational hub, the railway station in Udupi will soon have a pod hotel to cater to the moving population, said Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd., Director (Operations and Commercial) Santhosh Kumar Jha on Tuesday.
He was speaking to reporters after inaugurating the retiring room facility at the station. The pod (capsule) hotel will be similar to the ones at Mumbai Central, Chennai Central, and other places, he said. Once commissioned, the facility of Udupi will be the first in KRCL network, Mr. Jha added.
The Director said tenders for the hotel as well as an executive lounge will be floated in the next three months. In contrast to regular hotels where a customer pays for 24 hours stay even if he or she stays for a few hours, a user has the option to pay for six, 12, or 18 hour, he said. It will be spread over 3,000 sqft area with 50 pods.
A 20-bed air-conditioned dormitory (bunker beds) with attached bathroom and a double double-bed AC room formed the retiring room managed by Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation through a contractor that Mr. Jha inaugurated on Tuesday.
While ₹399 is charged for three hours at the dormitory, the double-bed accommodation costs ₹700 for three hours. They are available for passengers travelling with advance reservation tickets.
Mr. Jha said Udupi has been known as a religious, tourism and healthcare destination with people from across the country visiting the place. KRCL will provide more facilities at the station in the coming days. The Hindu in these columns on September 4 reported “With slush-filled parking area, inadequate platform shelters, Udupi Railway Station doesn’t gel with City’s stature, say passengers.”
The executive lounge, Mr. Jha said, will have high cushioned sofa sets, television, armrest chairs, information display board, Wi-Fi and pantry. A similar facility opened at Madgaon Station is getting good response, he said.
He said the expanded warehouse facility for goods at Udupi will be ready by December and at Thokur near Mangaluru by February next, Mr. Jha added.
KRCL’s Chief Commercial Manager L.K. Verma, Karwar Regional Railway Manager B.B. Nikam, Deputy Chief Commercial Manager R.D. Gholab, Manager (PR) Sudha Krishnamoorthy and others were present.