Definitions and overviews

Aurangabad consultant invites citizens' view on smart city


Aurangabad one of the ten cities shortlisted from Maharashtra state for the Centre's amibition '100 Smart Cities' mission, has appointed Project Management Consultancy (PMC) for preparation of its Smart City proposal.

In order to get maximum feedback, the PMC has urged the citizens to give suggestions to make the city smart. While giving presentation on the project in the standing committee meeting, the PMC representatives said they are looking forward for more than one lakh suggestions from the citizens.

According to a Times of India news report, Ajay Bhori, senior architect of PMC was quoted as saying "We will encourage participation of the people of all sections of society. Besides political leaders, social workers, general public and industrialists, we will also encourage school-going kids and senior citizens to come up with their views on the project."

Besides organising seminars and presentations on the project, PMC will also conduct essay and drawing competition to feel the pulse of the students. "These are effective channels to understand the views of the students on their concept of smart city. Hence, we will organise such events across the city," the representative said.

The PMC is looking at various innovative channels to generate revenue to enable the authorities realise the dream project, the report added.

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Govt to host 'Ideas Camp' next week

Urban Development Minister, Venkaiah Naidu

As part of its initiative to educate and encourage the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) to take active part and prepare a smart city plan under the government's amibition '100 Smart Cities' mission, the urban development ministry will host an event called 'Ideas Camp' in Delhi next week.

The government plans to get over 200 mayors and municipal commissioners of the ULBs, across the country under one roof, for this unique 'Ideas Camp'. The government will be inviting experts from the field of smart cities, who will help the civic bodies heads in conceptualizing and preparing plans.

According to media reports, some of the key experts that are likely to be part of the event - include the former Mayor of Washington DC, Anthony Williams and a fellow at Harvard and director of urban projects in Columbia, Alijandro Echeverri. The other two are chief architect of Barcelona smart city, Vincente Gullarte and executive director (cities) and London School of Economics, Phillip Rode.

'We have to change the mindset of urban governance to get the desired results. Financing is a crucial issue and this will be the key to the success of the scheme. Global exposure of how other cities have done it will help them to visualize how to take the programme forward,' a ministry official was quoted by a Times of India news report.

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Three musts for Smart City proposals

Smart Cities Proposals

At the onset, the government has not prescribed any particular format or model for preparing a Smart City Proposal, as it does not believe in the 'one-size-fits-all' approach. Hence, the Centre has given a free hand to city planners to formulate its own concept, vision, mission and plan for a 'Smart City' in line with its local content, resources and levels of ambition, while keeping in mind some the key below mentioned essentials.
The proposal should also contain  a plan for mobilisation of resources and intended outcomes in terms of infrastructure up-gradation and smart applications. By intended outcomes, it means how the projects will be financed, operated and maintained over the life cycle, and more importantly how the cost will be repaid over a period of 8-10 years or more shall be explained.
Finally, application of Smart Solutions should be an integral part of the proposal – how will technology, information and data be used to make infrastructure and services better for the citizens.
Guidelines demystified
1. Cover Core Infrastructure
Earlier 'Roti, Kapda & Makan' were said to be the basic needs of any human being living in a society. However, with the change of times today basic needs are more profound and hence become part of the core infrastructure in the society which we live.
Apart from affordable housing for the poor, adequate water & electricity supply, health, education, sanitation, efficient public transport, robust IT connectivity, safety-cum-security of citizens and good governance are some of the key ingredients of core infrastructure.
2. Three Models Proposed - Retrofitting, Redevelopment, Greenfield
The government has proposed the above three models on which a Smart City proposal has to be prepared viz – city improvement (Retrofitting), city renewal (Redevelopment) and city extension (Greenfield development) plus a pan-city initiative needs to be proposed.
 a) Retrofitting – To achieve smart cities objectives in large areas of more than 500 acres but using smart solutions in existing infrastructure to make the place more efficient and livable. This can be done in shorter time-frame, so as to replicate the policy in other parts of the city.
 b) Redevelopment –  This would mean replacement of existing built-up environment and co-creation of a new layout with enhanced infrastructure covering areas in excess of 50 acres identified by local urban bodies in consultation with citizens. Plans can be prepared based on higher FSI and higher ground coverage.
 c) Green development –  New infrastructure with smart solutions to b built around cities on vacant land to address the needs of expanding population, shall include affordable housing.
Additional the government has asked to submit at least one Pan-city smart solution to not only make the proposal inclusive but also to please the city residents, by letting them know there is something in it for all.
3. Sustainable Smart Cities Solutions
Every city has their own set of worries and problem, some even at the basic core infrastructure level, while others at macro level which may be caused to higher migration in certain urbanised locations. Hence, technology is likely to play a crucial role in developing smart solutions. Here are some of the illustrations proposed by the government.
 a) Water management – check water leakage, regulate maintenance, ensure quality monitoring, strom water reuse, rain water harvesting and introduce smart meters for proper billing.
 b) Energy management – cut down on power theft by introducing smart meters, tap renewable sources of energy like – solar. At least 10 per cent of the city's power requirement shall be sourced from solar energy; energy efficient street lighting, green buildings.
 c) Waste management this is one of the biggest problem for densely populated urban cities. Measures to solve this are – solid waste management, waste to compost, waste to energy, fuel plants, waste water to be treated and recycled.
 d)  De-congest roads - efficient public transport, intelligent traffic management, non-vehicle streets/ zones, smart parking, encouragement to non-motorised transport (e.g. walking and cycling) and pedestrian friendly pathways.
 e)  E-governance and citizen services – public information, grievance redressal, video crime monitoring, citizen engagement and skill development centres etc.
The race has already begun, city planners will now have to come out with not just smart or smarter but the smartest plan to be selected for the Stage II of the Smart Cities Challenge.

Click Here to download the complete Mission Statement & Guidelines document.

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