ANDHRA PRADESH

Tourism Department plans to revive Manginapudi beach

Hamsaladeevi, Kondapalli fort and Gandhi Hill to be also covered under project

P. Sujatha Varma

VIJAYAWADA: The tsunami-ravaged Manginapudi beach in Machilipatnam will soon bustle with activity again. The coast that wears a deserted look after it was battered by the giant tidal wave in December last year is all set to get a fresh lease of life, thanks to the Tourism Department's plan to revive the beach resort by providing it a facelift.

The tourism officials have decided to restore snack bars, changing rooms with toilet facility, beach lighting, fountains, ornamental structures, children's play area and an amphitheatre in addition to a plantation drive by the Forest Department.

Action plan sought

The Collector, Naveen Mittal, has asked the district tourism officer and the district manager, housing, to chalk out an action plan. "We intend to propose works costing Rs 30 lakhs. We have the concept ready, but it is in its preliminary stage," the district tourism officer, P. Vemana, said.

In continuation of last year's activity, he has also submitted proposals for Rs 70 lakhs for the completion of the beautification drive initiated at the picturesque Hamsaladeevi, the historic Kondapalli fort and the Gandhi Hill in the city.

A proposal was pending approval for initiation of works at an estimated cost of Rs 50 lakhs at Hamsaladeevi. "We intend to build a couple of jetties with steel. They are estimated to cost Rs 25 lakhs. This will be in addition to the Rs.15-lakh fibre boats to ferry tourists from Ratnakoderu drain to Sagara Sangamam, with a seating capacity of 50. And, Rs 10 lakhs would be spent on beautification at the proposed tourist complex and to create a children's play area," Mr. Vemana said.

Kondapalli fort

The action plan chalked out for providing an impetus to the Kondapalli fort envisaged an expenditure of Rs. 15 lakhs. As part of the first phase of the project implementation, a sum of Rs 5 lakhs was released which would be utilized for providing drinking water facility.

The fort would have at least three reservoirs, one each at the foot of the hill, in the middle of the hill and on the hilltop. Borewells would be sunk to pump water to the area on the hilltop. Construction of an arch gate abutting the National Highway No. 9 was also being contemplated to provide a suitable entry to the fort. The project was estimated to cost Rs. 5 lakhs.

The department officials, meanwhile, were also gearing up to enhance facilities at the Gandhi Hill in the city.

Recreation facilities, construction of park benches and fencing around the train track besides repairs and renovation of the fountains included the list of works proposed to be initiated there.

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