What Makes A City Smart?
To provide for the aspirations and needs of the citizens, urban planners ideally aim at developing the entire urban eco-system, which is represented by the four pillars of comprehensive development-institutional, physical, social and economic infrastructure
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Smart city brings together technology, government and society to enable the following characteristics: smart cities, a smart economy, smart mobility, a smart environment, smart people, smart living, and smart governance.
To provide for the aspirations and needs of the citizens, urban planners ideally aim at developing the entire urban eco-system, which is represented by the four pillars of comprehensive development-institutional, physical, social and economic infrastructure. This can be a long term goal and cities can work towards developing such comprehensive infrastructure incrementally, adding on layers of 'smartness'. In the approach of the Smart Cities Mission, the objective is to promote cities that provide core infrastructure and give a decent quality of life to its citizens, a clean and sustainable environment and application of 'Smart' Solutions.
Smart Cities Mission of the Government is a bold, new initiative. It is meant to set examples that can be replicated both within and outside the Smart City, catalysing the creation of similar Smart Cities in various regions and parts of the country.
The core infrastructure elements in a smart city would include:
1. adequate water supply,
2. Assured electricity supply,
3. Sanitation, including solid waste management,
4. Efficient urban mobility and public transport,
5. affordable housing, especially for the poor,
6. Robust IT connectivity and digitalization,
7. Good governance, especially e-Governance and citizen participation,
8. Sustainable environment,
9. Safety and security of citizens, particularly women, children and the elderly, and
10. Health and education
The purpose of the Smart Cities Mission is to drive economic growth and improve the quality of life of people by enabling local area development and harnessing technology, especially technology that leads to Smart outcomes. Area based development will transform existing areas (retrofit and redevelop), including slums, into better-planned ones, thereby improving the livability of the whole City. New areas (Greenfield) will be developed around cities in order to accommodate the expanding population in urban areas. Application of Smart Solutions will enable cities to use technology, information and data to improve infrastructure and services. Comprehensive development in this way will improve a quality of life, create employment and enhance incomes for all, especially the poor and the disadvantaged, leading to inclusive Cities.
The Ministry of Urban Development received proposals from the 97 cities to be the beneficiaries of the first year financing from 2016 onwards.