Smart cities to soon become a reality in India

Smart cities to soon become a reality in India


The first-of-its-kind partially completed smart city project in Mumbai, which is expected to be completed in 2025, is Palava city by the Lodha Group

Consider these scenarios: an office that’s walking distance from home. A completely Wi-Fi enabled city. A smart card for cashless transactions that is also capable of facial recognition and acts as a key to enter your building with advanced security systems. The same smart card also allows you to operate the electrical equipment at home through motion sensor technology. All this with a promise of 30% savings on electricity and water costs. These features may appear to be somewhat futuristic, but are likely to become a reality in India in less than a decade, as the smart city concept takes hold. A smart city is one that completely runs on technology—be it for electricity, water, sanitation and recycling, ensuring 24/7 water supply, traffic and transport systems that use data analytics to provide efficient solutions to ease commuting, automated building security and surveillance systems, requiring minimal human intervention, and Wi-Fi-powered open spaces and houses that ensure always-on, high-speed connectivity.

Smart cities can be horizontal or vertical, depending on the available space. Singapore is an example of a vertical smart city, while Masdar in Abu Dhabi is a horizontal smart city. The first-of-its-kind partially completed smart city project in Mumbai, which is expected to be completed in 2025, is Palava city by the Lodha Group. It will span 4,000 acres, and cost Rs.14,000 crore

For Palava, the Lodha Group has a franchisee agreement with Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Co. Ltd for 24-hour electricity supply; solar panels will power street lights. It has a tie-up with General Electric Co. (GE) for 100% water recycling, and automated water metering and billing to ensure transparency and zero water loss. It will run a fleet of CNG buses within Palava city and connect people to nearby Dombivali station and Navi Mumbai. The Lodha World School will offer all established Indian and international syllabi. And the Lodha Group is in talks with hospitals as well as several commercial establishments and multi-brand retail giants to set up shop in Palava. It has the potential to create 350,000 jobs by 2025

Information technology accounts for only 5% of the total project cost, says Shaishav Dharia, development director (Palava) at Lodha Group, adding: “The Lodha Group has also set up Palava City Management Association with citizens as members to deal with day-to-day issues, as well as a 311 grievance helpline number and 911 emergency helpline number for citizens, and a mobile app. Palava’s smart technology also extends to 500 surveillance cameras that capture real-time data and in future will support facial recognition for entry and have panic alarms every 200 metres. A smart card given to all Palava citizens will allow cashless transactions at retail centres, access to bus service, public Wi-Fi within Palava’s premises, building and commercial points entry, and information access from the Palava experience centre.


Streetline and IBM: smarter parking supports business, drivers and environment

Analyzing parking systems to maximize revenue while reducing environmental impact

As the percentage of people living in cities continues to grow, parking remains an unsolved problem affecting citizens, businesses, governments and the environment. Prolonged searches for parking impact traffic congestion,waste hours of time and increase carbon emissions, while abandonment of the search results in lost revenue for businesses and municipalities.Streamlining the parking process aligns with the goals of mass transit: reducing emissions and traffic congestion, while making life more convenient for people and stimulating local economies. For some drivers, public transportation is not currently a viable option,so spending less time circling city blocks in search of parking is an effective and convenient way of helping to reduce their negative impact.Streetline and IBM have partnered to provide advanced parking analytics solutions for cities and major facilities to reinvent parking. Parking sensors,networks and applications from Streetline, combined with IBM’s businessintelligence and analytics, help match drivers with available parking tominimize traffic, improve quality of life, reduce environmental impact
and maximize revenue.




Metro Acquired “WiTrac” vehicle actuated wireless traffic control system from Ministry of Communication:-

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The traffic congestion has become a major issue in the current traffic scenario. The travel time and congestion on signal could not be minimized by the traditional solutions since these are heuristic data based solution and can’t provide optimal solution in the fluctuating traffic scenario.

There are number of models used globally to optimize the signals but they do not meet the Indian traffic scenario due to high heterogeneity of traffic and poor lane selection by the commuters in India.

To overcome this limitation M/s Metro Infrasys Pvt. Ltd. acquired WiTrac technology featured  by  new model CoSiCoSt (Composite Signal Control Strategy) developed by C-DAC. This model suits the Indian traffic scenario most effectively among all the existing models of ATCS.

It is an advance technology which promises to make the traffic smooth in the cities. It is a traffic responsive system access and manipulates the real time data to optimize the traffic signal.

The solution provided by Metro has some unique features. The system has one master unit on each intersection which monitor the all other slave units and also communicate with the central control room for optimize the signal time.

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  • System is an eco-friendly system which used solar energy as an power source for the equipments.
  • The system communicates via wireless communication which reduces the civil work and obstruction on the intersection.
  • Enabled with remote administration, task like force flashed, junction off and download of plan can performed remotely.
  • Self diagnosis ability in case of power up and run time.
  • For technical perspective error log will be sent to the control room as networked to study the cause of failure.

The System has been implemented in Pune and Jaipur on trial basis and is performing satisfactorily.

System does not impact greatly on the traffic scenario. The system increases the average travel speed by 2% to 12% and reduces the average delay time by 11% to 30% only. But economically system saved 5.6 Crores in year 2006 by implementing the 6 project corridors.



Urban ITS mainly comprises of :

Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) are advanced appli­cations which, without embodying intelligence as such, aim to provide innovative services relating to different modes of transport and traffic management and enable various users to be better informed and make safer, more coordinated, and ‘smarter’ use of transport networks.

Intelligent transport technologies:
1.Wireless communications
2.Computational technologies
3.Floating car data/floating cellular data
4.Sensing technologies
5.Inductive loop detection
6.Video vehicle detection

Intelligent transport applications
1.Emergency vehicle notification systems
2.Automatic road enforcement
3.Variable speed limits
4.Collision avoidance systems
5.Dynamic Traffic Light Sequence

Report on Indian Urban Infrastructure and Services By Dr. Isher Alhuwalia

(Chairperson, Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations)

Download Report

World Bank Report

Download Report

Metro Infrasys Urban ITS Market Report

Download Report

3 Comments on “Smart cities to soon become a reality in India” Post your comment

  1. Sanjay Lande on February 16th, 2015 12:12 pm

    Like smart cities, smart towns concepts shall be implemented in rural part of the country , in some remote areas basic amenities are not available for the peoples living in there & our administrative systems makes their life more miserable, If we will be able to provide them safe drinking water & electricity they will be more than happy, after all they are also residents of India.

    Thanks & Regards,


  2. SP SINGH on July 3rd, 2015 4:51 pm

    Our Indian Govt should think more for our rural people, they should give target to all chief minister to make 100 smart villages in every two year where basic facilities should be provided; like school, primary hospital, safe drinking water facility and electricity and good transport & communication. Our prime minister should assign these target to every Chief minister of state, these facility shall make our village people happy, these projects should be made on time base & should be completed in time. We shall definately proud the day our villager will feel compfort.

  3. N.V.Mohan on July 23rd, 2017 4:33 pm

    Smart city is a good concept. But the need of the hour is smart villages. Villages are source of food, culture and lifeline of our country. Cities can’t cultivate food, can’t withstand culture and are of course threat to lives. Development without reproductive character may be named as smart but in reality….?

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