The concept of Smart city varies from city to city, depending on the resources, level of development, ambition and participation of the city’s inhabitants. To meet the needs of citizens, urban planners have focused on the development of the urban ecosystem. The purpose of the mission will be to provide basic infrastructure such as water and electricity supply, good sanitation, sound waste management, mobility and public transport and affordable housing, ensuring a quality life to the citizens. The goal of the mission would also be to use technology in such a way that it leads to smart solutions.
The first batch of 20 Smart Cities was announced by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday, January 28. These 20 smart cities will be the first to receive funds to start their development process without further delay. The overall total of the mission is estimated at INR 96,000 crore for which the center has already earmarked an amount of INR 48,000 crore to be released at regular intervals in the next five years and the rest 48,000 by the state.
Comprehensive development in this way will improve quality of life, create employment and improve incomes for all, especially the poor and underprivileged, leading to inclusive cities. Below is the list of the 20 smart cities, with Bhubaneswar being the privileged top list.
- Bhubaneshwar Known as the “Temple City of India”, Bhubaneswar is the privileged person to top the list of smart cities. It is the only Tier-2 city in the country to host the top five Indian IT companies: Infosys, Wipro, Tata Consultancy Services, Tech Mahindra and Mindtree. It is also a regional gateway to the Golden Tourist Triangle of Puri, Konark and Chilika Lake, some of the famous places in Odisha.
Pune is the eighth largest city in India by both population and GDP. With rapid urbanization, Pune’s population is expected to grow from 5.5 million to 7.7 million by 2030, affecting core infrastructure and life expectancy. Therefore, a smart city mission is an absolute requirement for Pune to turn it into a sustainable city, despite resource pressures and population growth.
Jaipur, also known as the “pink city”, is a major tourist attraction of India. The city is known for its fascinating monuments and colorful markets, hand-loomed clothes and beautifully landscaped gardens. It is an important hub for arts and crafts. It has many traditional shops selling antiques, jewellery, handicrafts, gemstones, bracelets, pottery, carpets, textiles, leather and metal products. In short, shopping in Jaipur is a pure delight for the tourists.
The city of Surat, formerly known as Suryapur, is the administrative capital of Surat district. It is a vibrant business center with 80% of the world’s diamond makers and 40% of India’s textile demand. It also serves as the economic hub for various industries. In this context, it is increasingly important to use technology to enable modernization.
Kochi, also known as Cochin, is an important port city on the southwest coast of India. Also known as the “Queen of the Arabian Sea”, Kochi has been a major spice trading center on India’s west coast since 14 CE.
- NDMC (New Delhi)
The political and business center of the country, Delhi prides itself on being the perfect blend of history and modernity. Loaded with some of the best universities in the world, Delhi also boasts of the best research centers, theatres, performing arts centers and museums. New Delhi features architectural brilliance from the British and Mughal buildings such as Rashtrapati Bhawan and Red Fort to the contemporary brilliance of several amusement parks, shopping malls, and party hubs.
Ahmedabad, India’s second largest cotton producer, has emerged as an important economic and industrial center. The city is divided into two physical regions by the Sabarmati. The old town is on the eastern side and is characterized by places of worship, some British-era buildings and full bazaars, and the new town on the western side, almost all built in the last 50 years. It has wider streets, educational institutions, residential areas and shopping centers.
A Tier-2 city in the state of Madhya Pradesh, Jabalpur is the third largest in the state and the third largest urban agglomeration in the country. It is most famous among tourists for the unique marble rock stretches of the Narmada River. We also recommend you to take an interesting trip by visiting 5 cities of Madhya Pradesh if you have enough time to take a vacation.
- Vizag, Andhra Pradesh
Located on the coast of the Bay of Bengal, Visakhapatnam or Vizag is Andhra Pradesh’s largest city in terms of area and population. It is also known as the financial capital of Andhra Pradesh. It is home to India’s largest shipbuilding yard and contributes to the Indian economy in many sectors such as heavy industries, tourism, industrial minerals, fisheries and information technology.
- Solapur, Maharashtra
The city of Solapur is located in southeastern Maharashtra. It has the world’s second largest and Asia’s largest spinning mill. With the largest number of sugar mills, the city is home to gigantic textile mills, sugar mills and bidi units.
11. Davangere, Karnataka
Davanagere is dug into the foothills of the Western Ghats and is currently a major agro-industrial hub of rice and sugarcane and hence is known as ‘Manchester of South India’. The city also has a number of reputed educational institutions. No wonder it made it to the top 20 smart cities preparing smart minds for the generation to come.
Only city with IIM and IIT as well, Indore is a city of superlatives with the world’s largest pharma market, Asia’s largest colony and the largest river pipeline. Indore has traditionally always been a commercially important city. And foodies take note, it has been voted as the “Food City of India”.
13.Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu
The second largest city and metropolitan area after Chennai, it has now become a hub for the IT and engineering industry. Its proximity to major southern cities has earned it the title of “Nucleus of South India” and a place of commercial importance. Its picturesque beauty is hard to ignore.
City of Lakes or “Venice of East”, Udaipur has always been the top destination for foreign tourists. The city of Udaipur is a mix of culture, architecture and science. With its lavish palaces and grand fortresses, it has been awarded as the “best city in the world”. And now it also gets the benefit of being one of the smart cities in India!
Bhopal is located in the center of India, a heart of the city. It is a fascinating amalgamation of scenic beauty, history and urbanism and not only an inspiration for the character “Soorma Bhopali” in Sholay. The city has moved past the wreckage and trauma of Bhopal Gas Tragedy and is now on track to become India’s next smart city.
16.Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh
Kakinada is located on the northeastern coast of Andhra Pradesh and is known as the fertilizer city. Surrounded by pristine beaches and beautiful landscapes, it is also a major hub for the IT industry. The cosmopolitan lifestyle and dotted planning have made it a smart city.
17. Ludhiana, Punjab
Ludhiana takes its name from Lodhi dynasty and is the cultural capital of Punjab. The city is an important center for textiles and industry and is fondly referred to as Manchester of India. With its definitive growth, it is an emerging metropolis.
It is the city of shopping malls, nightclubs and pride parades, a place where new and old collide. IIT Guwahati is ranked 14th globally in the top 20 of the ‘World’s Best Small Universities Ranking 2016’. The city also has the largest tea auction market. Being a “Gateway to North East India”, Guwahati will play an important role in the development of the seven sisters.
19. Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Chennai has a very strong auto parts manufacturing base and has earned the “Detroit of Asia” sobriquet. When it comes to technological and medical advancements, we owe it to Chennai. The city has developed well over time without forgetting its traditional and cultural roots.
The polemic city, disputed for sharing its border with Maharashtra and Goa, is now poised to become a smart city. It is nicknamed as the “cradle for infantry” because of a number of training centers for Indian armed forces. Its lush greenery and scenic fortresses make it a popular destination for tourists.
The prospect of these smart cities has paved the way for India into the ranks of developed countries. Looking forward to the first wave of smart cities emerging, bringing India more acclaim worldwide. Well done!