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Geospatially enabled Indian Smart Cities

The efforts of a developing country to leverage its all technological potential to ease the life of its citizens finally set to give shape to India’s most awaited desire to join the group of developed countries. The largest majority government of India is trying hard to fulfill the hope and promise to bring India on the path of development and live up to the expectations of the country’s 1.2 billion people. In the Budget 2014 Narendra Modi government laid out a road map to give shape to its futuristic vision of smart cities. Finance minister Arun Jaitley announced that the government will spend Rs.7,060 crore to turn into reality the dream of building 100 smart cities in the country.

‘Smart City is basically a technologically driven digital revolution that will necessarily ensures the social, economical and environmental improvement of current chaotic urbanization and brings the equal opportunity for its all habitants to enjoy fruits of development that fulfill their aspiration of better living standards.’

India is on the move of expanding economy. The current extent and positive wave of urbanization in a young and rapidly rising India has the potential to launch whole new and unconventional business opportunities in its cities. According to the report on 'India's Urban Awakening' by McKinsey Global Institute, the population of India’s cities will increase from 340 million in 2008 to 590 million by 2030 – 40 percent of India’s total population. The next 20 years will witness an urban transformation at a large scale and with the great speed thus India will have 68 cities with a population over one million – up from 42 today. That is nearly twice as many cities as all of Europe. With this rampant urbanization in India, government and urban planning agencies are looking for the combination of both mature and innovative technologies to manage the growing demands of city infrastructures and essential services.

Geospatial technology emerged as the key solution in knowledge-based policy driven and sustainable smart city development. High precision geospatial data acquisition instruments, efficient geo-processing software, improved geo-visualization framework and simulators help to create the roadmap for planners and policymakers to examine how well a specific city plan is contributing to each and every aspect of sustainability. In recent decades 3D City Modeling technology re-defined city planning and established as the core solution to reveal minute details of city infrastructure. These virtual models of physical reality provide a comprehensive platform for the exercise of applying simulation techniques for a variety of urban scenarios and to compare simulated outcomes with actual cities.

Smart cities will be constructed on the concrete foundation of engineering that fosters an innovative planning procedure to project the social impact, economic functions and the environmental pressure inside the city. Geospatially developed futuristic smart city map, 3D city models provides both the opportunity and creativity to map the existing urban system and to better simulate the consequences of changes in developing India.