Floating restaurant idea fished out again | Ahmedabad News

Ahmedabad: Since 2009, the idea of a floating restaurant has been like a capsized dream. After numerous unsuccessful attempts, Sabarmati Riverfront Development Corporation Limited (SRFDCL) has called for another expression of interest (EOI) from private companies and individuals.
Since 2009, a series of expressions of interest and tenders, almost seven, have been issued. But no company came forward to operate the restaurant.
Private players avoided the project on the grounds that SRFDCL assured water availability for just 10 months. Fresh Narmada water is let into the riverfront stretch infrequently. There was also the issue of illegal drains emptying into the riverfront waters.
“Earlier, due to water scarcity, levels on the Sabarmati riverfront could not be maintained across the year,” said an official. “The firms that had expressed interest in the project wanted an assurance from the civic authorities about maintaining sufficient water levels so that the restaurant can be operated without hindrance.”
The official added that now with the seaplane project coming up, water levels will be maintained making it feasible for restaurant operators. “We have invited tenders for this project and are positive that it will materialize this time,” the official said.
The tender issued by SRFDCL inviting expressions of interest mentions the provision of a high-end boat with a capacity of 100 passengers including crew. The vessel with a length of 50 metres and width of 10 metres has to have a flat bottom and twin propulsion system with a minimum draft of 1.5 metres, and a kitchen and a ticket window.
“The firm will also have to build a floating jetty for the project. Earlier, SRFDCL was to build the jetty for the operator,” said the official.
In the Vibrant Gujarat Summit 2017, the Gujarat tourism department had showcased this project estimating its cost at Rs 25.5 crore which included a vessel, the creation of support infrastructure, salaries of crew, and operational costs.

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