One of the oldest inhabited cities in Punjab, Jalandhar has undergone rapid urbanisation and developed into a highly industrialised centre of commerce. In fact, it is a global hub for the manufacture of sporting equipment. And now, after facing failure in two rounds of competition, Jalandhar has finally made it to the government's smart cities list. With a vision statement titled'Healthy and Productive Jalandhar, the leading sports and manufacturing hub in Asia', Dr Basant Garg, Municipal Commissioner, Municipal Corporation Jalandhar, discusses the city's plans with SERAPHINA D'SOUZA.
Tell us about the smart projects initiated within the city and the amount invested.
We are looking at a Rs 1,985-crore investment under the smart cities programme, for which we will receive funds from the Centre, state, the urban local body, the corporation's own resources and some projects handled under PPP. Area-based development (ABD) is taking up a huge chunk of funds whereas the pan-city initiatives have a lower budget. That said, to make a city actually smart, we need to spend more funds across it.
Thus, we will be designing other projects as well. Under ABD, we have chosen the 1,010-acre Burlton Park to be designed and retrofitted as a showcase for the smart city at Rs 1,520 crore. Along with basic facilities, a huge state-of-the-art multipurpose stadium and astounding shops and shopping arcades will be developed here. Under pan-city, we have identified smart LED lighting, WiFi services, smart poles and efficient transportation as well as projects related to multilevel parking, CCTV cameras, and space city initiatives and surveillance systems for traffic management.
We are also looking at projects under the Internet of Things (IoT). We are currently at the project management consultant (PMC) appointment stage, after which, we will float tenders to prepare the DPR in about two months.
Introduce us to the other core infrastructure projects planned.
At present, Jalandhar relies on 100-per-cent groundwater. This is fast depleting. We also incur a lot of expenditure to run the 520 tube wells to provide water to the city. So, one major project is surface water supply, through which water from river Beas will be provided to the city for drinking. This is in the design stage and estimated to cost about Rs 2,000 crore. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has already evinced interest in providing technical assistance in design as well as financial support. Besides, we have vastly improved our roads in the past three years; many flyovers have come up to increase connectivity. Under the Smart City programme, we are looking at increasing traffic mobility. We have located two areas where we need better connectivity with infrastructure such as flyovers. Further, we will also invest in maintaining existing roads.
What about projects initiated under AMRUT and JNNURM?
Under AMRUT, we have projects that include laying and rehabilitating the existing water supply and sewer systems and providing for sewage treatment plants (STP). We are essentially aiming at 24 + 7 water supply for 100 per cent of the area as well as 100 per cent water and sewerage treatment, for which we have already invited tenders.
We want to efficiently handle the entire water cycle by reducing non-revenue water. We are also planning a SCADA system, wherein the existing water pipeline will be rehabilitated, for which bulk metres will be installed. The overall budget for this water management system is about Rs 109 crore.
This is in three phases. We could not get any bidders for the first phase, but hope to get them in due course. Another project is a 100-MLD STP existing on old technology that we want to shift to SBR technology. We will also be coming up with another 50-MLD STP. At present, the treatment capacity is around 225 MLD; we are looking at around 300 MLD. We also have projects for transportation services and park and city development under AMRUT.
Also, share the various aspects of effective waste management, water or power distribution undertaken in the city.
We have already started designing our solid waste management project, in convergence with the Swachh Bharat mission. We are at the expression of interest (EoI) stage and have invited various parties to handle proposals. We want to develop this on a PPP basis.
We have an old system where solid waste was indefinitely dumped to a 14-acre landfill; we are now reclaiming our landfill through a bio-mining project. We will clear and segregate the waste accumulated over the past 30 years. We have already finalised details for the Rs 28-crore project.
Second, we are working on a proposal to set up a waste-to-energy plant. Third, we will set up biomethanation plants to handle organic waste at places such as sabji mandis where there are bulk generators. Our aim is to set up eight such plants of 5 tonne per day (tpd) capacity at eight identified areas where bulk generators can feed the plants. We will float tenders for these in another two months. Besides, we are also looking at stormwater sewers. Currently, only 4-5 per cent of the city area has stormwater sewers. We have suggested that this project be taken up under ADB support at about Rs 800 crore.
How is the city gearing up to become a magnet for sports activities?
The theme we have chosen for Jalandhar Smart City is that of a sporting hub; the city is also a hand tool manufacturing hub.
The area of Burlton Park will be developed in line with this. We are in the process of appointing a PMC for the stadium project, after which the DPR will be prepared and actual construction will start.
What is the annual budget planned for the city?
For the current financial year, the corporation's total budget is Rs 535 crore. Of this, we received 40 per cent as our share, which will not be converted into GST share. So, about 60 per cent is funded by the Centre and the state, while we raise the rest through our own resources such as building approvals, water supply, user charges, property tax, etc. Under Smart Cities, we are looking at about Rs 1,985 crore, 20 per cent of which will be funded by the corporation or through its own resources û through PPP or bonds - in the next five years. So, we are looking at funding of about Rs 400 crore over five years.
Total city area: 110 sq km.
Population: 8.74 lakh (as per 2011 Census).
Year of establishment: 1977.
No. of administrative wards: 60.
No. of households: 1.56 lakh (as per 2011 Census).
Annual budget: Rs.535 crore.
Smart city budget: Rs.1,985 crore over five years.
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