A prime railway land near the iconic Howrah station will be offered on 99-year-lease for residential-cum-commercial development as the national transporter looks to raise funds, officials said on Thursday.
The land parcel, having an area of 88,300 sq metres, is located along the Hooghly riverbank and will be put under the hammer with a reserve price of Rs 448 crore, they said.
"Rail Land Development Authority has invited bids for leasing vacant railway land at Salt Golah in Howrah. It is situated along a 20-metre-wide highway, around 1.5 km from the Howrah station," an official said.
"The initial feedback from local developers in the pre-bid meeting was encouraging. The deadline for bid submission is August 29," he said.
The Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) is a statutory authority under the Railway Ministry for the development of railway land. It has four key mandates as a part of its development plan -- leasing commercial sites, colony redevelopment, station redevelopment and multi- functional complexes.
"Howrah is a vibrant commercial hub of West Bengal. The land at Salt Golah can be used for residential-cum- commercial development. Water sports facilities can also be developed there," RLDA vice-chairman Ved Parkash Dudeja said.
The site is surrounded by Golabari Ghat and Ratnakar School in the north, Signal Workshop and Railway Printing Press in the south, the Hooghly river in the east and Salkia School Road on the west.
The lessee will be given controlled and regulated marketing rights and will be mandated to develop the site within ten years, officials said.
Indian Railways has around 43,000 hectares of vacant land across the country. The RLDA is currently handling 84 railway colony redevelopment projects and recently leased out three railway colonies in Guwahati and Secunderabad for redevelopment, they said.
RLDA has over 100 commercial (greenfield) sites across India for leasing, they added.