The Kolkata Government has shared a plan with the Union Urban Development Ministry to develop Rajarhat New Town into a smart green city. The plan has been prepared by the National Institute of Smart Governance (NISG).
The Urban Development Secretary of the State and Managing Director of Hidco, Debashish Sen, said, “We have submitted the New Town smart city concept plan to the Urban Development Ministry. Besides, a meeting will be held on May 13 to discuss the ways to take forward the proposed theme-based townships in the State.”
The plan states developing an intelligent public transport system, township wide wi-fi coverage, underground solid waste management system, sensor-based street light energy conservation modules, web-based property tax system, developing video-based health consultation clinics, synchronisation of land and tax data on the database, drone-based surveillance systems, synchronisation of land and tax data on the database, among other measures. The plan also mentions the use of analytics to automatically scrutinise CCTV footage, use of modern techniques to detect water flow in pipe networks. According to a Hidco official, “Talks have been held at the secretarial level on the smart city concept.”
A number of systems have already been introduced in New Town. A 16-point list was earlier placed before the Centre on the initiatives that the authorities were taking to develop New Town as a smart city. The initiatives comprise a vehicle-tracking system for solid waste management and use of more energy-efficient devices like LED street lights and solar panels on rooftops. The authorities are also planning to set up a monorail system for better connectivity and make the arterial road fully wi-fi enabled.
Besides Rajarhat New Town, the State Government has also identified nine other places in the State to be developed into smart cities. These include Baruipur, Bolpur, Debanandapur, Durgapur, Fulbari, Jaigaon, Kalyani, Raghunathpur and Sagar. There are also plans to unfold theme-based cities Asansol, Baruipur, Bolpur, Debgram, Dumurjala and Kalyani.
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