Has your city made it to the smart cities list?

Ghazi­abad, Kar­nal and Farid­abad make it to the list of 98 smart cities in the na­tional cap­i­tal re­gion (NCR) but real es­tate ex­perts say that their suc­cess­ful de­vel­op­ment de­pends on ef­fec­tive im­ple­men­ta­tion and mon­i­tor­ing at both the cen­tral and state leve

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - HT Es­tates Cor­re­spon­dent

With the union min­is­ter of ur­ban de­vel­op­ment Venka­iah Naidu declar­ing the nom­i­na­tions of 98 cities for the smart cities pro­gramme, real es­tate ex­perts say their suc­cess­ful de­vel­op­ment will rest on their ef­fec­tive im­ple­men­ta­tion and mon­i­tor­ing both at the cen­tral and the state lev­els and call for ac­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion by the private sec­tor.

Out of 98 cities an­nounced, 24 are cap­i­tal cities, 24 are business and in­dus­trial cen­tres,18 are of cul­tural and tourist im­por­tance, five are port cities and three are education and health­care hubs. As many as 12 cities have been short­listed from Ut­tar Pradesh and in­clude Ghazi­abad, Mo­rad­abad, Ali­garh, Sa­ha­ran­pur, Bareilly, Jhansi, Kan­pur, Al­la­habad, Luc­know, Varanasi, Agra and Ram­pur. In Haryana, Kar­nal and Farid­abad have made the cut.

The Cen­tre has ear­marked 48,000 crore for de­vel­op­ment of 100 smart cities. Each smart city would get a Cen­tral as­sis­tance of

100 crore per year for five years. The cities were se­lected through an in­tra-city com­pe­ti­tion and were eval­u­ated on pa­ram­e­ters such as ser­vice lev­els, fi­nan­cial and in­sti­tu­tional ca­pac­ity, past track record and re­forms.

“It is a very pos­i­tive ini­tia­tive and we trust there will be a con­crete ac­tion plan to make this am­bi­tion pos­si­ble. The private sec­tor is al­ready well-versed in mak­ing smart real es­tate de­vel­op­ments which boast of all the in­gre­di­ents a smart city must have, and must cer­tainly be coaxed into part­ner­ship with re­spec­tive state gov­ern­ments to con­trib­ute in ev­ery way pos­si­ble to­wards this ini­tia­tive,” says Ge­tam­ber Anand, pres­i­dent, CREDAI Na­tional.

An­shu­man Mag­a­zine, chair- man & MD, CBRE South Asia Pvt Ltd, says that “the suc­cess­ful de­vel­op­ment of th­ese smart cities will now hinge on their ef­fec­tive im­ple­men­ta­tion and mon­i­tor­ing at a Cen­tral as well as state lev­els. Huge fund mo­bil­i­sa­tion, gov­ern­ment ca­pac­ity build­ing at the state and city lev­els and pub­lic private part­ner­ships will be re­quired for de­vel­op­ment of th­ese cities. This can be a game changer for In­dia as it can stim­u­late eco­nomic growth, be­sides im­prov­ing the qual­ity of lives of mil­lions of peo­ple.”

As per the pro­file of the se­lected cities, 35 cities and towns have a pop­u­la­tion be­tween one and five lakh. There are 21 cities with pop­u­la­tion rang­ing be­tween five and 10 lakh. As many as 25 cities have pop­u­la­tion of above 10 lakh and below 25 lakh. A set of five cities are in the pop­u­la­tion range of 25 to 50 lakh. Four cities – Chen­nai, Greater Hyderabad, Greater Mum­bai and Ahmed­abad have a pop­u­la­tion of above 50 lakh each.

“The im­ple­men­ta­tion chal­lenges for the cities with popu- la­tion below 1 lakh would be some­what dif­fer­ent from the large cities. While com­plex­i­ties would be higher in the large cities, the main con­straint for the smaller cities is likely to be their tech­ni­cal ca­pac­ity in ar­eas like ur­ban plan­ning, fi­nan­cial man­age­ment, en­gi­neer­ing, pro­cure­ment and pro­gramme man­age­ment etc. It is here that state gov­ern­ments may need to think of some com­mon sup­port mech­a­nism for fast track­ing im­ple­men­ta­tion,” says Arim­dam Guha, se­nior director, Deloitte in In­dia.

“The an­nounce­ment of the list of 98 cities is a small step in the en­tire smart city dream. Based on the cur­rent con­tours of the smart city scheme, in­clu­sion in the list merely pro­vides a city ac­cess to some ad­di­tional fi­nan­cial re­sources over a five-year pe­riod. With most state gov­ern­ments fac­ing se­vere bud­getary con­straints and fi­nances of most mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties be­ing in a pre­car­i­ous con­di­tion, it re­mains to be seen how the smart city scheme be­comes fi­nan­cially sus­tain­able,” he adds.

The an­nounce­ment is a pos­i­tive step for­ward. The next step would be to iden­tify the first set of 20 cities that will get 500 crore of bud­getary sup­port. This money is only seed fund­ing to jump­start the process of t rans­for ma­tion of In­dian cities. It would be crit­i­cal to trans­form the gov­er­nance struc­tures to en­able a sus­tain­able city trans­for­ma­tion, adds Jai­jitBhat­tacharya, part­ner, In­fra­struc­ture and Gov­ern­ment Ser­vices, KPMG in In­dia.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.