Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Limited (a Government of Gujarat undertaking) is planning to develop a dinosaur fossil park at Raiyoli, Balasinor in Gujarat. The park will be built over 21 acres of land at an estimated cost of Rs 50 crore. The project may take another two years to complete as it is presently in a preliminary stage of appointing a consultant for the purpose.
Balasinor (Vadasinor) is a town located in the Mahisagar district of Gujarat and formerly it was a princely state of the Babi Dynasty belonging to the Babai (Pashtun tribe). Selection of Balasinor for dinosaur park is not without any reasons. In the early 1980s, during a regular geological survey of this mineral-rich area, Dinosaur hatcheries and fossils of at least 13 species were found. The most important discovery was that of a carnivorous abelisaurid named Rajasaurus Narmadensis which lived in the late Cretaceous period.
Analysing the evidence found in Raiyoli (located about 20 km north of Balasinor) it is believed that that Gujarat is home to one of the largest clutches of dinosaur hatcheries in the world. The soft soil made hatching and protecting eggs easier for the animals.
To spread awareness amongst tourists and locals regarding Dinosaurs, Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Limited (TCGL), has taken various initiatives in the area. The Dinosaur museum is one of the top attractions in the region, offering quality interpretational information regarding the Dinosaur in the region. The proposed site for dinosaur park is close to the existing Dinosaur Museum.
The project will involve development of trails, fossil viewing areas, various installations showcasing the geological significance, exhibition area, theatres (open and closed) exhibit areas, overall site landscaping, tourist amenities like cafeteria, toilets, cloak rooms, store, parking, souvenir shops etc.
The project will involve climate sensitive design and explore the usage of renewable energy (primarily solar and wind) as much as possible in the design. It is proposed to undertake sensitive site design involving the use of intra site mode of travel like BoVs, trails etc. Concepts like energy efficiency, barrier free design, efficient waste management etc will be preferred and will be suitably incorporated into the design.