With as many as five Smart Cities already being developed in the state, the Madhya Pradesh government will be setting up another 12 ‘mini Smart Cities’ to attract investors. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan announced the same during the Madhya Pradesh Global Investors Summit (GIS).
These 12 towns, to be converted into mini Smart Cities, will be equipped with intelligent transport management, Wi-Fi connectivity and best practices in garbage management.
Around Rs 300 crore has been allocated to fund the mini Smart Cities from the Chief Minister’s infrastructure development fund. Municipal bodies will set up special purpose vehicles and raise more funds for development of these Smart Cities.
Meanwhile, the government, through internal assessment, has selected Maihar, a temple town in Satna district, for the launch of the mini Smart City project.
These mini Smart Cities will be developed on the lines of the Centre’s Smart City Mission. The cities will have area-based development projects and pan-city initiatives.
Commenting on this initiative, Venkaiah Naidu, Union Minister of Urban Development, praised the efforts of the MP government in leading the Centre’s Smart City dream. “The state is proactive and will have five Smart Cities and 32 AMRUT towns in the making,” Naidu said. He added, “MP has got the highest amount of funds allocated for Smart Cities amongst other states.”
Vivek Agrawal, Urban Administration and Development Department Commissioner said that for the development of AMRUT cities, the state will contribute 50 per cent, the Centre will contribute 33 per cent, and urban local bodies will contribute around 17 per cent. He added, “We have allocated Rs 1,500 crore from the CM’s infra development fund. In the next phase, we will be ready with another tranche of Rs 1,800 crore.”
Meanwhile, during the Global Investors Summit (GIS), SmartCitiesCouncil India made its presence felt through its suggestions to the government. The Council urged Naidu to consider a mandatory provision in specifications such that the services and solutions provided by vendors are guaranteed for a minimum period of 10-15 years.
“It means, the vendor, while supplying its product or services, should give a minimum guaranteed 10-15 year period,” said Pratap Padode, Founder Director, SmartCitiesCouncil India. He added, “This will prevent fly-by-night solution providers from bidding for any Smart City project.”
“It goes without saying that the ULB must not accept a product or service lesser than this period,” he affirmed.
The Council also reminded the government to reconsider the concept of L1 in the tendering process so that life-cycle costing is taken into consideration. At the end, Padode recommended to the urban planners that the city plan could be inclusive, if the government-owned land bank in the centre of the city can be offered to the real estate developers for affordable housing projects under the build, operate and transfer basis.