ARCHITECTURE : 6 Features of Smart Cities: PM Modi's Vision for a Better Tomorrow

Migration from rural areas to major Indian cities is quite evident. It is estimated that about 25 to 30 people move to nearby cities in search of better livelihood and lifestyle every minute. By 2050, 843 million people will be living in cities!

Government of India has realised the need of the hour and announced that it will develop 100 Smart Cities - around existing major cities of India that will be energy-efficient, green and make lives more comfortable for their residents.

Here are the 6 features that will make a City 'Smart':

Smart Buildings
• Smart Buildings will save 30% water, 40% energy – and reduce maintenance cost by 10 to 30%.
• The market for Intelligent Building Management Systems market is expected to touch USD 1,891 million this year.
• Market predictions say that by 2020, India will be the World’s 3rd largest Construction Market – adding 11.5 million homes per year.

Smart Environment
• By 2017, the government plans to increase Renewable Energy capacity by 30,000 MW.
• USD 50 billion will be invested to improve the water sector while USD 276 million has been approved for the Yamuna Action Plan Phase III project in Delhi alone.
• About 67% of Indian rural population still defecates in the open. Toilets will be built and awareness campaigns about Sanitation will be organised.
• The Government of India has taken a loan of USD 500 million from the World Bank for the Rural Water
• Supply and Sanitation (RWSS) project in the Indian states of Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh

Smart IT & Communications
• Improved Information and
Communications Technology (ICT). Cloud Computing market is expected to touch USD 4.5 billion by this year while broadband connections are expected to reach 175 million users by 2017.
Security and Surveillance
• Under the flagship ‘Safe City’ project, the Union Ministry plans to employ advanced technology for Disaster Management in seven big cities (including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Bengaluru and Hyderabad).
• Disaster prevention programmes have also been planned for at-risk coastal villages of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.

Smart Energy
• Electrification of all households with at least 8 hours of power every day by 2017
• Develop a low-cost Smart Meter locally and install 130 million of them by 2021.
• Establish a Smart Grid test bed, a Smart Grid knowledge centre and 8 Smart Grid pilot projects.
• The 12th Five Year Plan promises addition of 88,000 MW of power generation capacity by 2017.

Smart Governance
• In Budget 2014-15, FDI norms were relaxed, USD 1.2 billion was allocated for smart cities, and USD 83 million was allocated for Digital India Initiative.
• The plan is to develop at least 2 smart cities in each of the 29 states, 7 smart cities along the Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor, and upgrade infrastructure in 500 urban areas.
• Smart City projects are expected to bring down unemployment by 10-15%.

Smart Transportation
• Bring 6 million electric and hybrid vehicles on road by 2020.
• Have electric vehicle charging stations in all urban areas as well as along all National Highways and State Highways by 2027.
• Over USD 20 billion will be invested on the metro rail projects.
• High Speed Rail is proposed between Mumbai and Ahmedabad – a distance of 534 km.
• Phase I of first monorail project of India is already being built in Mumbai.