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What is a smart city?

By - Research Team    |    Posted On 15 October 2015 |    Real Estate

What is a smart city?

A city which has all the basic infrastructure such as 24/7 water and electricity supply, excellent sanitation and solid waste management, a very good public transport system, well connected IT Systems to promote Governance and look after the safety and welfare of the citizens. This is a smart city.

Go Green Go Clean

For a city to become a smart city it has to be clean. Billions of liters of untreated sewage in urban areas, is dumped into rivers and lakes. This has to be stopped.An efficient solid waste management system is a must for a smart city. The solid waste is separated into organic and inorganic waste.

The organic waste is sent to a vermi compost production unit, where it is made into manure. It is then sent for use in gardens within the city.Inorganic waste is sent to an incinerator, where it is burnt. The thermal energy from the incinerator is used to power the city.

Smart city is a rain city

A smart city where all the residents and politicians know the value of rain water and use it in a beneficial way, rather than allow it to just wash away. This is a rain city.

Rain water harvesting is the way forward for a smart city. It is a method of storage of rainwater to meet plant and human needs. Buildings with flat roofs can be used to store water. Rain water running on cemented pavements, can be stored in underground tanks below sky scrapers. This water is then pumped for use in the smart city.

This water can be used to meet the demands of the city. Water borne diseases are common in large cities. Treated rain water can be used for drinking, leading to a fall in the number of water borne diseases. Flooding of cities can also be avoided by using rain water harvesting techniques.

Smart and intelligent Transportation

Cities today depend heavily on motor driven cars for transportation. These cars release toxic gases polluting the environment. The need of the hour are electric and hybrid vehicles. These electric cars are ideal to use in a smart city. Currently these cars are a bit expensive, but with improvements in technology and battery efficiency, much is expected from them.

The Government too has to subsidize the making of these vehicles, to promote their use. Use of waterways such as rivers, lakes and the sea for transport, is the way to solve transportation woes in a smart city and take the load off road transport.

Use of intelligent traffic management systems, where the smart phone in a car or the SATNAV/GPS system of the car, can be used to provide real time data on the location and movements of the car, can help in traffic management.

Intelligent traffic lighting systems, communicate with each other through signals and adapt to changing traffic conditions, preventing unnecessary idling of cars. Use of bio fuels saves on the cost of transportation.

Clean Fuel and clean technology

Smart Cities cannot depend on coal and diesel to meet their energy requirements. They need clean fuel.

Solar energy is the way forward. If 24/7 power has to be provided to a city, then solar energy must step up. Solar panels set up on large grounds, can easily generate a lot of power.

The citizens of the smart city can install solar photovoltaics, which convert the suns energy into electricity. The electricity is then stored in batteries. Excess electricity can be sold to the state power grid. Solar water heating for the citizens of the smart city is also useful.

The Smart grid

The smart grid consists of computers, controls, automation and digital systems. These technologies help adjust the power supply depending on customer needs.

If the customer uses a lot of power during the day (peak usage), then the smart grid increases the supply of power. If the night time power consumption is less, then the grid supplies lesser power. Smart meters help measure the electricity consumption of customers for billing purposes.

Governance in smart cities

  • Smart cities have e-governance. They also have an online grievance redressal mechanism, to resolve disputes and problems.

  • E-newsletters appraise the citizens on necessary information and development work and schemes in the city.

  • The citizens of smart cities participate in the Governance of the city.

The Government of India under the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has a vision of developing 100 smart cities in India. This could well put India, on the way to becoming a developed country.



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