Beating Sholinganallur, Mylapore and George Town, other shortlisted areas for the project, the move is expected to develop the congested T Nagar into a pedestrian-friendly shopping area, with a safe and continuous network of footpaths and cycle tracks.
While the deadline to present the ‘Smart City Challenge Mission Proposal’ as a prerequisite to find a place in the final list of 20 cities across the country expired on Tuesday, Tamil Nadu got an extension till December 28 because of the floods.
The civic body is also expected to come up with a parking management system to reduce illegal parking of vehicles. “We will install bollards to prevent illegal parking on busy streets and we are also considering a multi-level parking facility to accommodate vehicles,” said a corporation official.
Experts say the smart city project will change the face of T Nag ar, which was once a residential neighbourhood.
Advait Jani, Chennai programme coordinator, Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), said the project will help get the basics right.
“The augmentation of existing infrastructure is also key for its success.
It is a long-term project, which can be extended to other parts of the city.” Many shoppers in T Nagar welcomed the proposal. “We have been waiting for this project as T Nagar has become increasingly congested. Sometimes, there is no space for people to walk,” said K Sathish, a regular visitor of Pondy Bazaar.
The website, mygov.in, where citizens could register their proposals, received more than 1,800 suggestions. A majority of them (25%) voted for motorised transport, followed by intelligent traffic management (23%) and waste reduction and recycling at 21%.
To make it to the first list of 20 cities, which will be released next year, a city has to formulate a ‘Smart City Challenge Mission Proposal’. If selected, each city can carry out development work worth `1,000 crore over five years. Of this, `500 crore will be provided by the Union government, while the state government will contribute `250 crore. The city corporation will have to generate the remaining `250 crore through external funding during the five-year period.
Meanwhile, newly added neighbourhoods such as Ambattur, Tiruvottiyur, Alandur and Madhavaram have been identified for the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation scheme. These areas will get funds to improve infrastructure for water supply, sewerage, storm water drains, transport and development of green spaces and parks with special provision for meeting the needs of children.
Sholinganallur leads at 57% but lost
T Nagar may have been chosen as the corporation’s entry for the Centre’s Smart City project, but Sholinganallur garnered the highest number of votes according to the data available on mygov.in. While 57% of residents voted for Sholinganallur, T Nagar could bring in only 33% votes, followed by George Town (5%) and Mylapore (4%). According to the Centre’s guidelines for the Smart City project, areas should be selected based on public participation. “Many people voted for T Nagar via ballot boxes in zonal offices and also through corporation’s website,” said a senior official. TNN