Feasibility Report for Heritage-based Urban Development in Karnataka
During the last decade, the Government of Karnataka has taken up several initiatives to safeguard the heritage assets of the State. Seven of Karnataka’s settlements have been recently classified as heritage towns i.e.Belur-Halebidu, Badami, Bidar, Bijapur, Gulbarga, Mysore, and Srirangapatna. Now, as a prelude to planned approach for heritage development in Karnataka it is proposed to prepare detailed feasibility report for 7 Heritage towns of Karnataka.
Karnataka has a number of cities and towns that are rich in cultural heritage. Tangible and intangible cultural heritage have great potential as a driver for holistic local and regional development. Heritage destinations along with other locations in the state attract large numbers of international and domestic tourists contributing significantly to the economy of the state and town. Tourism is a growing industry and the earnings can be significant. However, tourism destinations, products, and services are necessary to be put in place to benefit from these earnings. Moreover, in places with significant cultural heritage, the heritage properties and values need to be protected and tourism development undertaken in a sensitive way so as not to diminish these qualities that attract visitors. The urban development of these heritage towns usually proceeds without any consideration or convergence with heritage management plans and goals. Although the earning from tourism are quite significant, only a small proportion of it finds its way into local economy and participants.
The report assesses the feasibility of heritage-based development projects in seven towns in the state, namely Badami, Belur-Halebid, Bidar, Bijapur, Gulbarga, Mysore and Srirangapatna which are all rich in heritage and culture. We propose a concept for heritage-based development that leverages their unique heritage as a tool for local improvement and development following the SUI Model for Sustainable Conservation and Development of Heritage Towns. The selected towns have ULB’s which makes the provision of services and facilities of basic infrastructure more efficient. They have the institutional agencies to make heritage-based development effective. ULB’s would also make jurisdiction and implementation of proposed projects smoother.
A detailed assessment of the existing infrastructure, socio-economic conditions, development strategies and environmental conditions has been done to identify the needs and gaps, along with the potentials and opportunities for improvement.
Most problems in the towns are linked to the lack of basic infrastructure, especially for tourists, unhygienic physical environment, the need for better connectivity and mobility and better linkages of the arts and crafts sector to the market. Gaps have been identified in planning and regulation as well along with a basic lack of heritage sensitivity and capacity.
There is immense potential for tourism development, employment generation, capacity building and through that local economic development as well. We believe that the arts and crafts sector needs to be promoted and given the right accesses to be able to compete in the national and global market. We have proposed in this report strategies that capitalize on the opportunities for livelihood generation in heritage-based urban development and an increase in local investment for revenue generation.
For- Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation