VISAKHAPATNAM: The Andhra Pradesh government’s plan to convert India’s oldest warhorse Viraat into a major tourist attraction (floating attraction) in Vizag coast has gained momentum as Chennai-based NAUTEX Maritime Private Limited will prepare a Techno, Economic Feasibility (TEF) report and detailed cost estimates to refurbishment and conversion of Viraat as dedicated tourist attraction at Bheemili area in Vizag, reports The Deccan Chronicle.
Though PMC was appointed as the lead consultancy for prepare the TEF report, consortium of Nautex has been approved for preparation of TEF study.
The AP government is still hoping on its grand plans to convert Viraat into a tourist attraction under Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode. District collector Pravin Kumar said that the team of Nautex will visit various places to study and prepare the TEF report.
Dismissing the reports that Viraat to be berthed at Kakinada in East Godavari district, Mr Pravin Kumar said that Viraat to be berthed in between Rushikonda and Bheemili in Vizag coast only.
As the agencies are yet to identify the best location in Vizag to berth the Viraat, the government will anchor the former Navy vessel at Kakinada sometime.
It is very difficult to say the estimated amount for the conversion of Viraat into a museum and berthing at Vizag coast unless we get TEF report, he added.
Executive director of AP Tourism Development Corporation, Vizag, R.S. Naidu said that as per the plans of AP Tourism Authority (APTA), the former Naval vessel will house a 120-room 4-star hotel with attached toilets and fresh water supply to each room.
A convention centre in the aircraft hangar space on the third deck extending into second deck, restaurants, eating spaces wherever appropriate with kitchens, retail and commercial spaces, entertainment zones, gaming arcades are the other attractions.