With Big Bazaar, Shoppers Stop and PVR, soon you will be able to watch movies and shop till you drop at Indian Railways stations! As part of its massive plan to redevelop railway stations into world-class hubs that offer airport-like experience, IRSDC is in talks with retail giants like PVR, Big Bazaar and Shoppers Stop. IRSDC or Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation, is the executing body of Indian Railways station redevelopment project. To begin with, IRSDC is pitching the ongoing Habibganj and Gandhinagar railway station redevelopment projects to these retail giants to set up shop.
Talking to Financial Express Online, IRSDC MD and CEO, SK Lohia said, “We are talking to PVR Cinemas to set up screens at the concourse area of the newly developed Gandhinagar railway station. They have shown interest and the talks are on.” “Big Bazaar and Shoppers Stop officials have already visited the site of the Gandhinagar station and are expected to survey the Habibganj station soon,” Lohia said, adding that the idea is to offer airport-like retail experience to Indian Railways passengers and also ensure a steady stream of revenue for the national transporter.
Madhya Pradesh’s Habibganj and Gujarat’s Gandhinagar railway stations are expected to be completely revamped by early 2019. The redevelopment work at both the stations is at advanced stages. Habibganj is the the first Indian Railways station that is being upgraded under the PPP (Public-Private Partnership) model. The work on the station, which is being done up on the lines of Germany’s Heidelberg railway station, is being jointly carried out by IRSDC and Bansal Pathways Habibganj Private Ltd. The Rs 450 crore project has tow components – Rs 100 crore for the station and Rs 350 crore for commercial development work. The glass-like dome structure of the new Habibganj station will house food plazas and cafeterias, gaming zones, retail areas and plush waiting lounges among a host of other amenities.
The Gandhinagar Capital railway station project is another unique initiative since it will house a 5-star hotel above the station! The Rs 250 crore project is being executed with the help of an SPV between IRSDC and the Gujarat government. The 300-room hotel will be 22 metres above the ground with 3 buildings combined to give the impression of the shape of petals. Just like Habibganj, this too will have retail areas, 600 seats for passenger convenience, modular clean toilets, book stalls, dedicated transit halls and shops.