Mumbai, India (PressExposure) January 13, 2014 -- Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) will build a tourist park near Gangapur dam in Nashik, with a Jantar Mantar-like observatory. The plan will be replicated near Panshet dam, close to Pune, and at Mula dam in Ahmednagar. Jantar Mantar in Jaipur is a collection of architectural astronomical instruments, built by Rajput Sawai Jai Singh during the 1700s. MTDC's project will be operational 24/7. The park will feature a resort, a boat club, adventure and water sports, and an international convention centre. Amphibious aircraft will land and take-off from the dams where the project will come up, Neha Madaan reported in The Times of India.
An MTDC official said that the place near Gangapur dam will be the first where the tourist park will come up. "The amphibious aircraft will almost take an hour to reach Nashik from Mumbai, which will be an added attraction for tourists," he said, adding that the project will be a modern observatory for amateur astronomy enthusiasts and not an exact replica of the Jantar Mantar.
The State Tourism Department has procured a 50-acre land from the State Irrigation Department for the project in Nashik. The official added that MP Sameer Bhujbal and Chhagan Bhujbal, Minister for Public Works & Special Assistance Department and Tourism, Government of Maharashtra, had helped MTDC procure funds from the Centre and assistance from the state for the project.
"The astronomical observatory will be open till 2 or 3 am, depending on local authorities' permission. An array of telescopes will facilitate star-gazing," the official said. Bungee jumping, artificial rock climbing, mud-biking as well as boating activities with paddling and row boats will be a part of the project, the official added.
Mechanical boats will not be used to keep the park environment-friendly. A houseboat may also be approved for the project, the official said. "We are making an ideal model in Nashik. The project has to also be financially viable," he said. The Corporation has asked the Irrigation Department for land for the project near Panshet and Mula dams.