Manipal: Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) and Pizza Hut will be opening outlets in Manipal by the end of May 2012. The fast food franchises have signed a deal with Shri Durga Developers, an Udupi based builder, and will be situated in the upcoming Shiroor Towers, near Syndicate Circle.
According to the developers, the basement and ground floor of the building have been allocated for commercial enterprises whereas the first three floors are for residential purposes. Wildcraft, Blackberry, a unisex salon and a jewellery store are in negotiations for the space. Both floors put together can host a total of 10 shops.
The construction of a multiplex is also underway behind Shiroor Towers. With the capacity to accommodate 490 people at a time across three screens, the multiplex will also have a food court and a gaming zone. The licensee, however, has not been decided yet. The inauguration is expected to take place in January 2013.
The construction of ‘Central Park’, adjacent to Shiroor Towers has also begun. The eight-storey structure which will be built over the next two years is projected to include a five star hotel with a conference hall, a shopping centre, a garden restaurant and a bar.
“Sixty percent of the students who go to Bharath Mall (Mangalore), go for movies. If there’s a multiplex here, students will not have to travel that far. With KFC and other eating outlets nearby, they can relax at the same time,” said Bhaskar Shetty, Manager of Durga Developers.
Smaller enterprises like Chickees Fried Chicken and Hot Chix, which cater to the demands of the KFC-yearning crowd might also be affected with the opening of these complexes. When asked how Movie Dome, a small theater, plans to cope with the new competition, its manager Sunil Rao replied, “The multiplex is luxurious and it’s a big stage. Movie Dome will have to shut down. The students want to watch new movies but it takes a week for us to show it, so they go to Aashirvad Theater in Udupi. But multiplex ticket prices will be high, around Rs. 150. If I play the same movie for Rs. 50, students will think about whether to come here or go there. When it opens in January, then I’ll give it two to three months and then decide whether to shut down.”
Reteesha Ramdani, a first year Biomedical student from Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT) said, “We have Snack Shack and Snack Point, but it’s not the same as KFC. The journey to Mangalore is so long; it takes two hours to get there and two hours to come back. Our whole day is lost and we’re dead tired by then. Who wouldn’t like KFC or Pizza Hut close by?”
“Given the fact that there are not just students, but families living in Manipal, having commercial complexes close by will help them,” said Kaustav Ganguly, a second year automobile engineering student of MIT.
Sub-edited by Bhavani Seetharaman
Corrigendum: The headline has been changed due to feedback that the previous headline was misleading. The Manipal Journal apologises for the changes made.
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