Planning Green Smart Cities in India
On the threshold of rapid and massive urbanization, India with 378 million people living in urban areas, has emerged as the second largest urban system globally. With urban population projected to grow to 800 million by the year 2051, contributing more than 75% of the national wealth, cities will have vital role in guiding the growth and development trajectory of the nation. Cities, as an area of concentration of population and activities, are known to define, script and showcase the unending story of human growth and development, contributing disproportionately to economic growth, promoting social transformation besides being centers for promoting innovations and human excellence. Despite distinct advantages cities hold, they are known for their dualities / contradictions, where slums over-shadow the city growth; where poverty and prosperity compete; where unplanned development is becoming order of the day and where basic amenities and services are eluding majority of urban residents. To leverage their positivity, urban centers need to be innovatively planned, developed and managed to make them smart, sustainable, livable, environment friendly, productive, effective and efficient. This would require new options and strategies to be put in place for rationalizing their growth and development. In search for innovative solutions to make cities in India smart, green, safe, sustainable, resilient and inclusive, paper explores the option of promoting smart planning, redefining master plans, rationalizing legal framework , promoting good governance, planning smart/sustainable mobility and leveraging technologies.
Key words: Sustainability, Smart Planning, Green Mobility, Good Governance.