Visakhapatnam to get theme park on biodiversity

The futuristic view of the theme park proposed with an estimated project cost of ₹100 crore at Thimmapuram near Visakhapatnam.

The futuristic view of the theme park proposed with an estimated project cost of ₹100 crore at Thimmapuram near Visakhapatnam.  

Facility to ‘mimic’ flora and fauna of various regions in a simulated environment

The citizens need not go to the Himalayan wilderness any more to experience its rare and unique biodiversity as they can ‘see’ and ‘feel’ it through simulations at a theme park that has been proposed at Thimmapuram, 10 km away from the city on the Vizag-Bhimili beach road.

Not only the Himalayan flora and fauna, but also the rich biodiversity of the Eastern and Western Ghats have also been planned to find place in the park. And if things go according to the plans, the park will also have a section to house the ‘Jurassic World’.

Claimed to be the first-of-its-kind facility in India, the theme park is being promoted by Natural History Society of India and the project is being undertaken by Andhra Pradesh Natural History Parks and Museums Trust, a special body created to handle the works.

According to K.V. Subbarao, member secretary of Andhra Pradesh Natural History Parks and Museums Trust, the park is being designed with immersive technology which has been used in a similar project in Singapore.

Immersive technology

“The immersive technology is a combination of 2D and 3D technology that emulates a physical world in a digital or simulated environment. The park will have many domes, each housing a theme such as the Himalayan region or the western ghats or Jurassic world. Visitors can just walk through that region or period and feel the Himalayan snow, spot a snow leopard, get the thrill of a Pterosaurs from the Jurassic World flying overhead or a Tyrannosaurus running past for that matter,” Mr. Subbarao, a retired professor from IIT-Bombay, explains.

Cost sharing

The ‘Jurassic World’ is very much a part of the project, but it may take some time to come up, he adds.

The park will come up in 15 acres allotted by the State government and the estimated project cost has been put at ₹100 crore, of which ₹40 crore will be funded by the Centre and the rest will be raised through public-private partnership (PPP).

Virtual aquarium

“The first phase of the project is estimated to be completed by the year-end and it will house parks showcasing different regions of India. It will take at least four years for the completion of the total project. The trust is planning to forge tie-ups with various organisations for CSR funds and collaborations. We are not only looking for funds, but also approaching various organisations for their expertise,” Mr. Subbarao says.

Meanwhile, plans are afoot to build a simulated section of ocean for which the Indian Navy has been approached to map the floor of Bay of Bengal. “It is going to be a virtual aquarium and people can get a feel of walking along the ocean bed with fish and other marine species swimming past,” Mr. Subbarao says.

The trust has tapped the IIT-Mumbai alumni for technical expertise, and the response is said to be overwhelming.

The basic idea is to preserve and conserve the natural history including geology, biodiversity and flora and fauna. “Every region in India has its own and unique rock formations and biodiversity, and the idea is to showcase all of them at one place,” the retired IIT professor adds.

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Printable version | Feb 17, 2020 12:24:13 AM |

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