While the pedestrian plaza and smart bike projects are well underway, there are many other plans for Chennai under the Smart Cities Mission, all at at various stages of progress. While Chennai started its smart city projects a couple of years after other cities did, it has caught up with the latter now, feels Raj Cherubal, CEO of Chennai Smart City Limited (CSCL).
A few exciting projects in store include the restoration of the Mambalam Canal. The restoration efforts will not only focus on cleaning of the canal but also the creation of usable public spaces around the same, with walking paths and seating spaces.
The focussed effort that has gone into the conceptualization and execution of projects under the smart city banner in Chennai has been crucial to the city’s launching of some mega projects in collaboration with organizations such as the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
In the coming months, Chennai can look forward to projects such as Intelligent Traffic Management System, which will include cameras at most traffic junctions. This is expected to improve compliance with rules and ease the work of the traffic police, says Raj.
Another project that CSCL is looking to execute is the launch of smart classrooms and upgrade corporation run schools in the city, in terms of infrastructure and improvement of outcomes. The idea is to make corporation schools sought-after by all.
Raj discusses other efforts, such as the identification of various properties of Corporation and agencies such as the MTC that can be developed commercially in order to yield higher revenue. These projects extend beyond the initial brief of the smart city and the new projects are designed to be sustainable environmentally and financially, says Raj.
Watch the final part of our interview to find out what Chennaiites can look forward to over the next few years!
[Interviewed by Laasya Shekhar]