Smart City Project: New Initiative by the Government of India

The concept:

The smart cities mission is a pioneering initiative by the Government of India. On 25 June 2016, the “100 Smart Cities Mission” was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It is the urban restructuring program, with the mission to develop 100 cities across the country making them modern, clean, livable, citizen-friendly and sustainable, by applying smart solutions.


The main purposes of this project are to boost economic growth and offer upgraded living quality to its citizens. The smart cities mission intends to be a torchbearer to the other cities of our country, which can motivate them to scale up and upgrade for a better future.

Coverage and Duration

The coverage plan states that financial aid will be given by the central and state governments between 2017-2022 to the cities. The forecast is that the mission starts showing results from 2022 onwards.

Financing of Smart Cities

Smart cities need infrastructure up-gradation, which is a high investment proposal. A total budget of ₹98,000 crore has been approved by the Indian Cabinet for the growth of 100 smart cities and the transformation of 500 others.

Selection of Smart Cities

The 100 cities that have been selected for smart city project went through smart cities challenge, where cities competed in a countrywide platform to obtain the benefits of this mission. In January 2018, 99 cities have been selected for this mission, based on their plans. Shillong was the 100th city to qualify under a smart city project in June 2018.

Smart Cities Mission Strategy

A competitive approach was taken by The Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) under this program for selecting cities for funding, created on an area-based development strategy. Cities at the beginning competed at the state level with their contenders within the state. Then the state-level winner contended at the national level Smart City Challenge. Cities which received the highest marks in a particular round were selected to be part of the program. In August 2015 the Ministry of Urban Development released the list of 98 nominees proposed by their respective state governments.

Smart city project is based on the Area-based Development Strategy that is segregated into three models. They are Retrofitting, Redevelopment and Greenfield development.

Area-based Development Models:

  1. Retrofitting (City Improvement): Retrofitting will use an existing built-up area to attain smart city objectives, to make the existing area more optimized and livable. In retrofitting, an area consisting of more than 500 acres has to be identified with the consultation of the citizens. The level of infrastructure is to be measured in the area and then adjustments are made to the existing model, in a smart way with large number of smart applications to make a retrofitted smart city. Retrofitting needs shorter time frame, leading to its replication in another part of the city.
  2. Redevelopment (City Renewal): Redevelopment is a replacement of the existing structure and enables co-creation of a new layout with improved infrastructure. Redevelopment involves an area of more than 50 acres, identified by Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) in consultation with citizens.
  3. Greenfield Development (City Extension): Greenfield development model works on a previously vacant area (more than 250 acres). It is all about the introduction of smart solutions using innovative planning, with provision for affordable housing, especially for the poor. Greenfield developments are vital to accommodate an increase in population in the cities.

Note: For North Eastern and the Himalayan States, the area proposed to be developed will be one-half of what is prescribed for any of the alternative models.

  1. Pan City Development: Pan-city development provisions application of some of the smart solutions to the existing infrastructure of the city. It involves the use of technology, information, and data to make infrastructure and civic services better. For example, applying wastewater recycling can make a huge contribution to better water management in the city.

The smart city proposal of each shortlisted city is expected to go through either a retrofitting or redevelopment or greenfield development model, or an amalgamation of the three along with a Pan-city feature with Smart Solution.

Key Features of Smart City Mission

As we all know that the purpose of a smart city to offer a smart live with smart solutions. Hence there are some of the features of comprehensive development in Smart Cities. Here is the list mentioned below:

  1. Affordable Housing
  2. Core Infrastructure
  • Adequate water supply
  1. Proper sanitation
  2. Integrated Multi-modal Transport
  3. Electricity Supply
  • Creation and preservation of open spaces
  • E-governance
  1. Information Technology Connectivity
  2. Digitalization
  3. Waste & Traffic Management
  • Safety and security of citizens

Smart City Project: Effect on real estate

With a minimum of 100 cities planned to hold the smart city identity, new avenues for job openings will influence the demand for commercial and residential spaces and an overall rise in the standard of living. Thus, a GDP increase of 10-12% is expected in the real estate sector by 2022.


About The Author:

Akash sir

Akash Pharande is Director of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in Western Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings. Woodsville in Moshi is another highly successful PCMC-based township by Pharande Spaces which is now in its 3rd phase.

Leave a Reply