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Indian Smart City going geospatial way

The Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India recently conducted a survey to determine the cleanest city in India. The city of Indore has bagged the top position. Incidentally, Indore is also amongst the Top 20 Smart Cities announced by the Government of India.

Evidently, apart from the dedicated efforts put in by the authorities and the people of Indore, geospatial technology has also been a vital player in ensuring this ranking for the city.

Indore Municipal Commission (IMC) ensured that all of its waste collection vehicles (approximately 400), catering to both households as well as commercial establishments were fitted with GPS receivers. Along with the involvement of a few NGOs of the city (who helped in drafting pre-defined routes for each vehicle), this ensured that drivers knew the exact route to be followed for waste collection day in and day out. In this manner the city made sure that tracking the movement of its vehicles along pre-defined routes will ensure timely and structured collection of waste from each and every household.

Making small beginnings with the technology, the city officials have already envisaged a brighter geospatial future for the city of Indore.

Web GIS Portal

In the First Phase, a Web GIS Portal for Citizens is planned to be made available, which shall allow Citizens to locate administrative units, Office Locations, available facilities (like petrol pumps, hospitals, schools etc.). This portal shall also be helpful for officials for making better planning decisions.

In the second phase, the GIS portal will be enhanced and integrated with future planned systems like; Intelligent Transport Management System; Intelligent Utilities Management System (Water, Gas, Power, Sewage and Road); Intelligent Solid Waste Management; Intelligent Vehicle Tracking System; Intelligent Parking Management System; Smart Pole Data Management System; Building Plan Approval System; Workflow based Municipal NOCs Processing System; Health Information Management System; Enterprise Project Management System; and Enterprise Asset Management System.

Web GIS portal

The Enterprise GIS level system to be made operational will provide the required framework to integrate not only every stakeholder but also every aspect of smart city processes – starting from conceptualization, planning, and development to maintenance. The system shall play a vital role in many areas of Indore Smart City, some areas where the benefits of unique capabilities of GIS can be quickly leveraged include Asset Management-Manage Asset and resource information; Planning & Analysis-Facilitate better planning and analysis; Field Operations-Get information in and out of the field; Situational Awareness-Provide comprehensive view of operations; Constituent Engagement-Engage stakeholders and citizens.

Simultaneously, the vehicle tracking and monitoring solution, being currently used for waste collection vehicles, is being taken forward to its logical second stage. IMC has already planned to implement rigorous monitoring of vehicles to stop pilferage of fuel and reduce fuel consumption by monitoring fuel efficiency of vehicles (through the use of existing GPS trackers and GIS based analytics).

Monitoring and managing Smart City

Apart from this, geospatial technology is also being planned to be utilized for monitoring and managing components of Smart City which includes (but not limited to) the following:

Intelligent Transport System with smart signaling | Smart Parking | Real time air quality monitoring/ Environmental sensors | Smart Energy Meters with net metering | Smart Distribution grid | SCADA System (for water, wastewater & sanitation) | Smart Water meters | ICT based SWM | Pubic Wi-Fi Hotspots | Area Command and control center | Smart Classrooms with Wi-Fi | Sensor based energy based street lighting | Installation of multi-use CCTV cameras | Smart Hospital Management System (including Hospital Information, Electronic Medical Record and Genomics) | Planning for eco-sensitive areas, preparation of Green and Blue Master Plans, Climate Change/Vulnerability and Hazard Modelling etc. | Monitoring and managing Property tax collection | Monitoring and managing e-services | Building plan approval system | Project management

GIS-based property tax survey is under process which aims to provide 27 GIS layers covering rivers, roads, urban agglomerations, vacant lands, villages, settlement boundaries, waste lands etc. Apart from this, GIS database for water and sewer network has also been prepared for the entire city.


Realising vision

There is no doubt that geospatial technology will be the key tool in establishment and management of smart cities. Indore is showing the way, other cities are also firming up their geospatial plans. One hopes that all the technology stakeholders come together to remove bottlenecks in technology adoption and truly realise the power of geospatial technology in realizing the vision for Smart Cities.

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