Smart Cities mission: Gujarat completes 62% of its projects in six cities

Gujarat has completed nearly 62% of the 337 projects planned under the National Smart Cities Mission (NSCM) so far, spending less than 35% of the Rs 16,500 crore approved for the urban development programme. Notwithstanding the same, the state government is hoping to commission all the projects before the June 2023 deadline.

“Six cities including Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Surat, Vadodara, Gandhinagar and Dahod were selected under the NSCM out of a total of 100 cities across the country. Of the 337 projects planned for these six cities, 209 were completed by the end of 2021.

115 projects are at work order stage and tendering process for the remaining 13 has kicked off,” says a senior official with the state urban development department.

Smart Cities mission: Gujarat completes 62% of its projects in six cities

Most of the projects aimed at making the six cities smarter are related to information and communications technology (ICT) and water infrastructure. The ICT projects include those for intelligent transit management system and automatic fare collection system, optical fibres communication (OFC) network, command & control centres, new generation citizen grievance redressal system with support for social media, man-less parking system and automatic ticket dispensing machines, smart lights, common city payment card system, integrated traffic control system & area surveillance network, heritage mobile app, etc.

The water infrastructure projects include those for smart water ATM, smart toilets, storm drainage system, recycling and reuse of waste water, sewerage trunkline, rain water recharging and effective water supply system. Other projects including those for solar power generation, water to energy, electric buses, integrated transport mobility, plastic waste management centre, C and D waste collection and processing, development of iconic roads, smart Anganwadi, air and water quality monitoring system, affordable housing, and public bicycle sharing system are either completed or at development stage.

According to the official, the idea is to make the six smart cities in the state slum-free. An automated land encroachment prevention system is also being developed. Projects related to sports complexes, city ground stadiums, auditoriums, city beautification works, lakes, smart multi-level car parking, 24×7 helpline centres, foot over bridges having lift for the differently abled and senior citizens, e-libraries, etc. are also in full swing in these cities,he adds.

Of the 70 different projects worth Rs 5,750 crore awarded to Ahmedabad, 55 projects worth Rs 1,870 crore have been completed. Out of 82 projects worth Rs 3,190 crore in Surat, 70 projects valued at Rs 2,048 crore have been completed. In Vadodara, out of 54 projects valued at Rs 2,190 cr, 37 worth Rs 920 crore have been completed. As far as Rajkot is concerned, out of 73 projects worth Rs 3,280 crore, only 21 projects worth Rs 334 crore have been completed. In the case of Gandhinagar and Dahod, out of 25 and 33 projects worth Rs 1,120 crore and Rs 923 crore, respectively,11 and 16 projects valued at Rs 230 crore and Rs 220 crore, respectively, have been completed.

The NSCM was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on June 25, 2015. A total of Rs 98,000 crore ($13 billion) was approved by the Union government for the development of 100 smart cities across the country. The cities were selected on the basis of a Smart Cities challenge, wherein cities competed in a country-wide competition to obtain benefits under the mission. Except for West Bengal, all Indian states and union territories nominated at least one city for the Smart Cities Challenge.