The first phase of the project spanning 22.5 sqkm of Dholera Industrial City, located around 110 km southwest of Ahmedabad on the western coast, encompassing 22 villages and the Dholera taluka, and part of the ambitious USD 90-billion Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor announced in 2009, is almost fully complete.
According to the officials, only around 5 per cent of the key infra work, primarily of the 100-meter wide storm water canal, is left to be completed. Nearly Rs 3,000 crore (excluding land cost) have been spent to make this city functional, of which around Rs 1,400 crore is invested to build the basic infrastructure.
Of the 11 investment regions proposed to be developed in the first phase of the DMIC, the Dholera Special Investment Region (SIR) is the biggest with a total area of 920 sqkm, with a target residential population of 2 million and over 8 lakh jobs by 2040.
The Dholera SIR has smart and sustainable infrastructure spanning transportation, water, power, waste-water, drainage and urban design. Its focus sectors include only non-polluting industries such as heavy engineering, automobiles & auto ancillary, defence, electronics, hi-tech, agri & food processing and infrastructure.
Apart from an international airport that will be built over a 1,500 acres with a 3.5 km long runway, the SIR will also have the world’s largest solar park of 5 gw and the city will be connected with Ahmedabad by a 6-lane access-controlled expressway and metro rail.
Already, Tata Power has commissioned a 300-mw solar plant (of the planned 4,400 mw) in the SIR, while Tata Chemicals’ is setting lithium ion battery plant at an investment of Rs 4,000 crore and Renew Power is investing around Rs 4,000 crore to make solar panels in phases.
To make the project attractive to all, the SIR policy allows land owners/farmers to own the entire land as the SIR will return their land after developing the basic infrastructure and they continue to farm or earn rental income from industrialists or realty developers. The policy allows commercial use of only 52 per cent of the developed land.
Of the total 920 sqkm, 340 sqkm are under the coastal regulation zone so can’t be touched and the rest 422 sqkm will be put to commercial use, of which 15-20 per cent will be greenery.