The Tamil Nadu tourism department is implementing a Rs 450-crore project along with the Asian Development Bank (ADB). In the first phase, the department would take up the East Coast circuit followed by the Southern circuit. The main focus will be on improving infrastructure and safety.
The first meeting of the State Level Steering Committee in this regard was held here on Wednesday.
Tamil Nadu is one among the four states selected by ADB for the Infrastructure Development Investment Programme for Tourism. TN is the only southern state with the other being Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. The programme targets enhanced economic growth and provision of livelihood opportunities for local communities through tourism infrastructure development.
The East Coast circuit (pilgrimage and heritage) would cover Kancheepuram, Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur and Thanjavur districts. The Southern circuit (pilgrimage and eco) would cover Pudukottai, Sivaganga, Madurai, Theni, Ramanathapuram, Tirunelveli, Tuticorin and Kanyakumari districts, according to an official release.
The project will be implemented over a period of five years with a total outlay of around Rs 450 crore. It would include improvement of basic urban infrastructure and incidental services at existing and emerging tourist destinations and gateways, improved connectivity to tourist attractions focusing, enhanced quality of natural and cultural tourist attractions to ensure convenience and safety for visitors and greater participation by local communities among others.
The committee also approved setting up of a project management unit at Chennai and a project implementation unit at Poompuhar in Nagapattinam district.
It authorised Tamil Nadu Tourism to take necessary steps to appoint project management and design and supervision consultants, the release said.