According to Hardeep Puri, MoS(I/C) Housing and Urban Affairs Smart City Mission (SCM) is setting a new benchmark in terms of project implementation. The value of projects under implementation in August 2017 was about Rs. 8,000 crore which after eight months has increased to more than Rs. 30,000 crore involving 936 projects. Further, about 400 projects costing Rs. 20,000 crore are in tender stage, which would be settled over a next 2-3 months. 98 projects costing Rs. 6000 crore are under implementation with Public Private Partnership which are getting good responses, not only in the big cities but even in the smaller towns. In the last eight months, 26 more SPVs were established, taking the total SPVs to 91 and total number of PMCs to 67. Regarding the Smart City centres, he informed that while 9 have become operational including in Bhopal, work is in progress to develop Smart City Centers in another 14 cities and tenders have been issued in 32 more cities.
He was speaking at the 2 day Apex Conference which was being organized with an objective to provide momentum to the cities and also a platform for cross-learning, sharing and disseminating the experience gained over the past two and a half years.
An exhibition showcasing the different projects being undertaken by Cities under Smart Cities Mission was also inaugurated. The conference will have panel discussions under Smart Cities Mission across key thematic areas viz., (i) Development of Walkable Streets, (ii) Creation of Universally Accessible Public Spaces, (iii) Digitally Integrated Smart City Centers, (iv) Creating Vibrant Urban Spaces such as Squares, Plazas and Waterfront Developments under Area Based Development, (v) Addressing Women Safety in Smart Cities, (vi) Promotion of Arts Crafts and Culture in Smart Cities, (vii) Smart Education and Skill Development, (viii) Inclusive Cities and (ix) Bonds and PPPs for financing urban infrastructure.