8 February 2017

Minister of Railways Launched the first Phase of the Station Redevelopment Program comprising 23 major Railway Stations of Indian Railways

In order to transform the face of the Indian Railways, Minister of Railways, Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu launched the first Phase of the World’s largest Station Redevelopment Program comprising 23 major Railway Stations on Indian Railways network. Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar was present to grace the occasion. Chairman, Railway Board, Shri A.K. Mital, Member Engineering, Railway Board, Aditya Kumar Mittal, Member Traffic, Railway Board, Shri Mohd. Jamshed and other Board Members and other distinguished guests were present to grace the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion, Minister of Railways Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu said that the Railways have certain advantages out of which one is holding of land on a large scale. He said that Railway Stations is a place where lots of people wait to board a train and thus Railway Station can be developed into an iconic property. He said that the properties of the Railways have a unique characteristic. He stated that the Ministry of Urban Development is collaborating with the Ministry of Railways to develop smart stations because smart stations are a pre-requisite for becoming a smart city.  He further said that the project of re-developing 400 A1 and A Category Stations in the country is the biggest non-fare revenue generating programme which will be done on PPP model through a fair bidding system conducted by the respective Zonal Railways. He said that in the first phase, 23 stations will be bid out and redeveloped to the fullest use where so many facilities can be enjoyed by the passengers at one place. He also directed all the General Managers/DRM through video conferencing to collaborate with the Station Government for re-development of Stations.

Welcoming the Minister of Railways and other delegates, Chairman, Railway Board, Shri A.K. Mital said that our effort for last 10 years will see a culmination as we launch the first lot of stations for redevelopment through public-private partnership. These stations have been selected for this phase after detailed feasibility studies carried out by our Strategic Advisors, The Boston Consulting Group. He said that Railways mission is to redevelop railway stations using the surplus revenue that will be generated from commercial development of spare railway land.

The 400 stations to be redeveloped will provide amenities and services to the passengers in line with best in class railway stations. The stations will be redeveloped through public-private-partnership (PPP) model without straining Railways' finances.

In the first phase, 23 stations will be bid out some of which include Chennai Central, Ranchi, Udaipur City, Indore, Yesvantpur, Bangalore Cantt., Visakhapatnam, Howrah, Kamakhya, Faridabad, Jammu Tawi, Secunderabad, Vijayawada, Kozhikode and Bhopal. Railways will provide approximately 140 acres of encroachment free land at these stations to the developers on a 45 year lease.  Indian Railways has also appointed nodal officers in each zone to ensure smooth interactions with the developers. The phase is expected to be of approximately ₹ 6000 -9,000 Crore in size. Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is the strategic advisor for this program and based on the commercial assessment conducted by them and several rounds of discussions held with the developers and zonal railways, Indian Railways team is confident that the round will generate sufficient market interest.

The redeveloped stations will improve passenger experience by providing amenities like digital signage, escalators / elevators, self ticketing counters, executive lounges, luggage screening machines, walkways, holding areas for passengers, grand and distinctive roofing and flooring, free and paid Wi-Fi etc. The program will benefit more than 100 cities and 16 million passengers per day across the country. Moreover, the commercial development undertaken near the stations will become nerve centers of the city and provide quality retail, commercial and hospitality development.

Railway Board has devised an innovative plan to provide these amenities through PPP model by leveraging the real estate available at the railway stations. With an overall size of 1 lakh crore, the program is one of the largest PPP program undertaken in the country. The program will provide approximately 2,200 acres of prime land to the private developers across top 100 cities of the country. A committee of eminent experts would be formulated to provide suggestions to Zonal Railways on proposals submitted by bidders in addition to the technical and financial committee recommendations. Commercial potential of this vacant Railway land at/near stations will be leveraged to develop world class stations with no additional funding required from the Railways. The program is expected to generate a surplus in excess of ₹ 10,000 Crore for the Indian Railways which can be invested in other modernization projects. Select high potential stations will be made as iconic stations and will be developed as per highest global standards and design norms.