Symposium On Sustainable Smart Cities Delhi, India, March 2015

Sustainability is ensuring diversity and productivity despite growth. Why urban sustainability is important for the world?

Majority of the urban development in India is concentrated in few centres like National Capital region (Gurgaon, Delhi, Ghaziabad, NOIDA, Faridabad), Bangalore (Whitefield/Electronic City), Hyderabad (Cyberabad region), Pune (Hinjewadi), Chennai (OMR, Ambattur), Mumbai (Bandra Kurla Complex, Northern Suburbs). Such concentrated development led to increased trip lengths and reduced travel speeds leading to wastage of millions of productive hours.

With increasing cost of agriculture and better employment opportunities in urban areas, more and more people are migrating to cities. A UN study conducted in year 2011 estimated that ~70% of world population will live in cities by year 2050. The High Powered Expert Committee (HPEC) by Government of India for Estimating the Investment Requirements for Urban Infrastructure Services projected that India?s urban population will be close to 600 million by year 2031. At the same time investment requirement for urban infrastructure (consisting Urban Roads, Urban Transport, Renewal and Redevelopment including Slums, Water Supply, Sewerage, Storm Water Drains, Capacity Building, Traffic Support Infrastructure, Solid Waste Management and Street Lighting) over the 20-year period is estimated at Rs 39.2 lakh crore further O&M requirements for new and old assets are estimated at Rs 19.9 lakh crore.

The Government of India has declared the mission of Creating 100 Smart Cities across the nation. As there are no specific guidelines on what makes a city smart, there is a strong need to debate and discuss on the subject as smart cities can decongest existing city spaces and decentralize the development through integration of surrounding habitations and eventually become regional growth centers. Each one of these smart city can potentially become a stand-alone engine of economic growth based on the idea of maximizing self-reliance and inclusion as Mahatma Gandhi had envisioned in his concept of Swaraj with Sarvoday. Thus Decentralization - the true objective of 74th Constitutional amendment can be achieved.

A truly smart city is more than sensors, big data and an all-seeing internet - Emma Stewart,The Guardian

Based on these ideas FICCI, CREDAI, CoA, IIA and MIDAS together are organizing this symposium to provide a platform to discuss ideas for sustainable smart city development. The symposium will feature panel discussions, lectures and interactions with architects, planners, engineers, students, policy makers and other experts associated with Urban Planning.

Symposium On Sustainable Smart Cities Delhi, India, March 2015