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How Faridabad Clinched the Smart City Deal?

For a city to be selected for the Smart Cities Mission of the Central Government, it is required that the State shall submit a list of cities which would then compete to get selected. The Central Government allocates number of cities within a state or union territory for this purpose. Haryana has been allocated 2 cities under this project. With many cities vying for being in the coveted list which has the potential to transform the way people live in these cities, there was very tough competition. These 8 competing cities were Gurgaon, Palwal, Faridabad, Yamunanagar, Hissar, Sonepat, Panipat, Rohtak and Karnal. Assessment was based on about 13 different parameters with total score of 100.

All representative cities were required to give presentation to make a case for their inclusion. At the end of this exercise, Karnal and Faridabad made it to the top spot beating Gurgaon, the neighbouring city of Faridabad of the Millennium City fame.

So, how did Faridabad fare better than Gurgaon, in particular, and other cities of the State, in general? Well, some of the reasons are related to its achievements while some others are attributable to failures of others. Some experts also point to the political bias and other considerations, which can be kept aside for sometime for the sake of purely practical assessment. The presentation was given to a team headed by Haryana’s Chief Secretary Deepinder Singh Dhesi.

Faridabad was not only ranking better than other cities of Haryana but also of the other NCR cities. Some of the main reasons which went in its favour were:

  • Ability to generate revenue by MCF, making it financially sound. It shall be remembered that a portion of the Smart City project finance is required to be funded by the local bodies of that city. To that end, this becomes a performance criteria which MCF was able to highlight quite effectively.
  • Online Grievance Redressal System and e-bulletin are in place. This is another achievement considering the fact that a lot of emphasis will be laid on e-governance and IT penetration in the project.
  • MCF’s payment of salaries to its employees by June 30 is another point which went in its favour.
  • Completion of Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission’s three projects out or sanctioned four. These pertained to sewage system revamping, sewage treatment, drainage works in old town area and solid waste management project.

Gurgaon lost due to a number of reasons. Despite being a good source of revenue generation for the entire city, it lost on account of a number of factors. Some of these are:

  • Weak municipality
  • Multiplicity of authorities
  • Non-qualification for JNNURM ever in the past
  • Poor property tax collections

Some people have also pointed to the fact that Gurgaon never had a great political influence in Haryana, whereas Faridabad stood to gain for its ‘industrial town’ ethos.

All in all, it is never too late for any city but it does show shortcoming in local governance for those which could not make it and alerts them to what they stand to lose if they do not improve. For the winners also, it will be a challenge to keep up the good work and improve further to provide better urban life to its residents.

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Criteria for Selection of Smart Cities

Selection of 100 Smart Cities is based on two levels of competition. First, at the State or Union Territory level, leading to selection of cities. Second is for priority-based funding out of these 100 cities.

First Level of competition which is to be held at the State or UT level wherein each city would make its presentation in front of a team of panelists. This level requires completion of some conditions which precede the point-based evaluation criteria.

  • There are four conditions to be satisfied by each city, such as
  • Undertaking by the State to make City Smart,
  • constitution of inter-departmental task force including ULBs, UDAs and para-statal bodies to achieve this objective,
  • resolution by the elected council of city to make the City Smart, and
  • holding consultations with the residents on development priorities.

These set of conditions are required to be fulfilled at first. After this, case of each city was considered against the following parameters:

  • 13- point parameter for ranking cities are

 

Existing Service Levels Points
Increase on number of household sanitary latrines over Census 2011 or Swachh Bharat baseline (whichever is less) 10
Operation of Online Grievance Redressal System with provision of response being sent back to complainant 5
Publication of at least first monthly e-newsletter 5
Information on Project-wise municipal budget expenditure for the last two financial years to be placed on website 5
Institutional Systems/ Capacities
Compensatory penalty levy for delays in service delivery 5
Collection of internally generated revenue during the last three FYs (2012-15) 10
Self-financing
Payment of salaries by ULB up-to last month 5
Audit of accounts up-to FY 12-13 5
Percentage contribution of tax revenue, fees and user charges, rents and other internal revenue sources to the ULB Budget (actuals in 2014-15) 10
Percentage of establishment and maintenance cost of water supply, which is met by collected user charges for supply of water during last FY (2014-15) 10
Past track record and reforms
Percentage of internal revenue sources (self-generated) budget funds used for capital works during FY (2014-15) 10
Percentage of City-level JnNURM Reforms achieved (Form2, Part 14) 10
Percentage of JnNURM projects completed, which were sanctioned during the original Mission period (upto 2012) 10

 

Once the cities are selected, the next level is of financing. These 100 cities will formulate Smart City Plans which will also be evaluated on the basis of following parameters. Top 20 scorers will be financed during the first year and remaining 80 would be selected in batches of 40 each for financing during next rounds.

Criteria for Evaluation of City Plans

  • At City-level,
    • Credibility of Implementation- Average time taken for approving building plans, rise in property tax assessment and collection, water user charge collection, power supply improvements, traffic congestion easing, using IT for statutory form access and submission, etc.
    • Vision and Strategy- Use of Information, Communication technology to  improve delivery of public service, core economic activities and inclusiveness.
  • At Proposal- level,
    • Impact of proposal- on poor and disadvantaged. Employment generation, impact on environment, etc.
    • Cost effectiveness
    • Innovation and Scalability
    • Processes followed
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Smart Cities Project- Core Objectives Which a Smart City Would Achieve

Smart Cities Mission of the Central Government is based on the fact there is rapid urbanization taking place which will see many cities emerge. Currently, about 31 percent of India’s population lives in urban areas which contribute to more than 60 percent of national GDP. In next 15 years, at current pace of urbanization, about 40 percent of population will live in cities contributing about 75 percent to our GDP. With this in view, it is important that cities develop in a well-planned manner to not just house these people but also to sustain pressure on land, be economically and environmentally viable and sustainable and shall provide ‘Smart Solutions’ to people.

The core of this Mission revolves around 2 themes:

  • Presence of Core Infrastructure Elements, and
  • Smart Solutions

Core Infrastructure Elements, as defined in the Mission Statement document of this project are:

  • Sufficient Water Supply
  • Assured Electricity
  • Good Sanitation and solid waste management
  • Efficient urban mobility and public transportation systems
  • Affordable housing with poor in view
  • IT connectivity
  • Good Governance, based on e-Governance and participation of citizens
  • Sustainable environment
  • Safety and security of citizens
  • Health and Education facilities

Smart Solutions, as defined in the document are indicative and could include more. These are:

E-Governance and Citizen Participation Energy Management Waste Management
Public Information Smart Metres & proper management Converting waste to energy and fuel
Grievance Redressal Renewable energy focus Converting waste to compost
Electronic service delivery Energy efficient buildings Treatments of waste water
Citizen Participation Green Buildings Recycling of C&D waster
Video Crime Monitoring    
Urban Mobility Water Management Miscellaneous
Smart Parking provisions Smart Metres & Mgt Tele-medicine
Intelligent traffic mgt Leakage plugging Tele-education
Multi-modal integrated transport Preventive maintenance Trade facilitation centres
  Water Quality Monitoring Skill Development Centres
     

To begin with, the project will cover 100 cities in a 5 year time period. This will be done with a three-pronged approach of either city improvement, or city renewal or city extension. Besides, there will be implementation of Smart Solutions mentioned above with Pan-city initiatives. Please note that Pan-city solutions will cover entire city irrespective of which model of development is being used for it. Let us take a little deeper look into these 3 strategies of development of Smart Cities.

City Improvement, which has become famous by the name of Retrofitting, will be initiated in an already developed area to make it more efficient and liveable. Within a city, an area of 500 acres would be identified in consultation with the citizens of the city for implementing retrofitting initiatives. The laying of cemented roads in some sectors of Faridabad which you would be noticing is a part of this project. Sectors 21 A, B, C, 28, 29, 30, 19 and 16 of Faridabad are being developed under the retrofitting model.

Redevelopment, the second approach, would seek to replace an existing developed environment with a view to create new layout with mixed land use and increased density through higher FSI and high ground coverage. An area of 50 acres would be identified for this purpose by Urban Local Bodies in consultation with the citizens of the city.

Greendfield City development, the third approach, will be carried out in a new area of more than 250 acres which has not been developed yet. These would be developed around the existing cities with affordable housing for the poor and to absorb rising population of existing cities.

Selection of Cities

For this project selection of cities is to be done based on spirit of “competitive and cooperative federalism”. Each state will be allocated a quota of cities to be developed. And, the cities within a state or union territory would compete with each other to be selected. These will have to make a presentation for their eligibility to get selected.

The top five states with highest number of quota for these cities are:

 

Uttar Pradesh 13
Tamil Nadu 12
Maharashtra 10
Madhya Pradesh 7
Karnataka and Gujarat 6 each

 

State of Haryana has been allocated 2 cities. Faridabad and Karnal have won over others for this Mission. (read here on how Faridabad made it to the list)

 

 

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Increasing Need of Green Homes in India

Real estate development across the world gets remarkable increases specially youth in emerging countries are imposing immense pressure on the environment and its natural resources. With such kind of rapid development, there are some prominent factors are on stake for instance availability of energy and environmental sustainability. After research, we find real estate is one of the biggest contributors to global warming as it spreads out widespread pollution during the construction process.

In such scenario, green housing and eco-friendly homes are highly appreciated as they are utilized to minimize the opposing impact of construction and such green surrounding help endorsing healthier living for people. It has been proved that living in conservativehomes has not been working favourable to residents, either it’s a matter of living standards or the cost of excessive energy consumption. Green constructions not only enhance the quality of life but also reduce the cost of living, as these buildings compriseexpressivelylesserfeeding of energy, water and other resources.

The generaladvantages of green buildings depend on the degree to which defensiblestructures are included during the early planning and design. Because of the collectivecuriosity in the conception by home buyers, many developers have started sponsoring projects under the category of eco-friendly homes. It is important for developer to attain the certification from the green rating systems (GRIHA) followed in India.

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How Real Estate Investment Offers You Best Returns

Real estate remains to be one of the most preferred investment ways. One common cause of desirability is apparently enormous returns in real estate. Many investors use Mutual funds as a stepping stone. But usually it happens, once people reach at some good amount they again prefer to invest in yet another real estate.

Different people has different perspectives as some people feel good investing at some physical asset or something which they can touch let’s say a home as they are aware of the worst period of stock market and they find its better to invest in real estate while other get involved in investing in share market. So, every investor is on a different phase of learning curve. At times, you need to take risk or change as you may get far better returns after having experience of something new. Some people learn by observation and some people learn only by experience.

One should make anobjectivecentred investment that is profitable and flexible too. Once you for real estate investment, you need to pay only 20% from yoursavings and rest of the payment is done by banks by doing so you can have really luxury home even after paying a nominal amount. For instance, if you buy property of 2 Cr. Initially you need to pay 40 lakhs only and after 5 years’ time or so you will be able to sell off your property at 2.4 cr. This is how, you find it such a great investment even after having a least amount in your hand.

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Which Property Suits you the Most Among Plots Flats and Villas

When you finally decide to purchase your home, you might have lots of queries in your mind like whether you should invest in a plot, villa or flat. Apart from monetary determinants, there are many other factors that add to the obsession of each of these options. There are pros and cons of plots, villas and apartments that make difference in our choice and suitability. Nothing can be compared with the satisfaction after having home of our choice and at our favorite location. Let’s say plots are one of the most flexible options that give us chance to build our home in our own way. After buying plots, you have the freedom to build extra floors, modify the interiors and exteriors according to the latest trend and the area later if you want more space then you can avail more as per your need.

If we compare plots with flats we find the rate of return is greater as of the difference of demand-supply and the supply of plots is lesser as contrast to that of flats. A large portion of the residential buyers in India have a preference of flats over plots. The main reason being large numbers of options are available for apartments and lesser initial investment required. If you go for flats or apartments you get various extra benefits in the form of benefits such as swimming pool, club house, landscaped gardens, gymnasium, play area for kids, sporting centers such as badminton court, tennis court and basket ball court etc. On the other hand, there is another amazing option of villas that gives us combined benefits of plots and flats. The independent houses give us great freedom but without the headache of huge investment, efforts and time for construction.  These complexes offer common facilities as well as private amenities such as terrace gardens. Hence, we have all types of properties have their own benefits and drawbacks. To get the maximum benefits and best deal, you will come to know about the best deal.

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Essential Things to Know Before Investing in a Luxury Apartment

The moment reasonable and mid-segment group housing market was observing a descending trend among 2011 and 2013, lavish realty was moving on a speedy lane. India witnessed Rs. 10,000 crore worth of premium houses launched across the country in 2012-13. More, prior to investing, one must understand the calculation of carpet area, built-up area and super built-up area. Carpet area is the area that comes up within the walls of the apartment, built-up area is an addition of carpet area and area occupied by the walls, super built-up area is a sum of carpet area, built-up area and common areas while ensuring that the apartment has sufficient carpet area. However, there are some more specific aspects that need to be checked.

Is the property away from any dispute – Most of the times luxury projects are caught by arguments. At times, there are there are delays in projects. You must check if the builder has given all the necessary approvals before going for an agreement. Further, you must check if the building plan is made as per the local authority. There should not be any conflict in construction plan according to government.

In House Facilities- You need to check the sufficient storage area and appropriate sizesof bedrooms and dining area. Having a double ceiling apartment would be most suitable if it is on top floor. Quality of sanitary and wooden work in doors and windows matters a lot.

Architectural Intensity- It is quite obvious that developers give high-end quality in luxury apartments. Go for a reputed builder. You will deserve pleasant sight that will allow you enjoy the beauty of nature. You will have lovely outdoor space, park, swimming pool. Interiors of apartments should allow sunlight to enter in home recently.

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How to Make Property Buying a Wise Decision

In today’s time buying property is not a very complex task as with the advancement of information technology we can get any kind of real estate information regarding buying or selling the properties through various property portals. You can easily get the current happenings of real estate market through internet. Famous real estate website like www.propertymaster.in provides you information about running and upcoming residential and commercial projects in Greater Faridabad, Gurgaon, Bhiwadi and Sohna. More, you will be having best consultation and market updates about buying and selling. However, apart from property’s size, layout, price details, there are some more prominent factors that need to be considered before deciding on buying a property. These factors are listed below:

Inspection of the location of property is one of the most prominent jobs while looking for a property. You should do a though check about the safety of the residents, neighborhood and nearby facilities like shopping complexes, hospitals, schools etc. So, it is recommended to narrow down specific locations where you want to reside in. That way you will be able to simplify the options. More, you should visit the place twice in a day to understand the environment of morning and evening’s time.  By doing so, you will get to know the status of day’s sunlight in the home and crowd in the evening around the home. You will have the exact picture of your living feel at your home. You must check the proper ventilation in the home. Interacting with neighbors is important to have the experience of living in the specific area.

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Real Estate Agent Helps to Get the Profitable deal

With the success of real estate industry, the importance and demand of real estate agents are increasing among the investors who are seeking best real estate solutions. The need of a real estate expert is a need of today since people who are unaware about the property market would be curious to know about current and future situation of the property market and upcoming scope of developments. At times, people wonder why there is that much need of a real estate agent rather than trying to find out a suitable property or selling out their house on their own. However, the fact is that the real estate agents work as a mode of inside information and other aspects too.

Real estate agents play a role of middlemen having familiarity and knowledge in property market as you do not need to be anxious about any phase whether it is a matter of buying, selling, leasing or re selling. You would get the best advice and you will be provided the best options for you. More, they have a strong network of renowned developers and reliable contractors that help them finding you the best realty solutions within your budget area.

While it comes to finalizing the deal, you may not have the good negotiating skills as you do not have the thorough knowledge of property market and other various aspects. On the other hand they are expert in negotiating as they have broad ranging knowledge of exact rates of the local market and they have good relations with the builders also. Hence, it would be best for you if you hire a real estate agent to get the profitable deal.

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Real Estate Sectors Rises with the Development of IT industry in India

Real estate activities in our country have increased at great pace from last one decade. And the increase of various industries and new sectors has pushed the residential and commercial real estate demands in major parts of the country.

Information technology is one such sector that has played a major role in the growth of India’s real estate sector. At present, IT sector has pushed the real estate demand and supply and it has become one of the largest employers of people from graduates to MBA and engineers as it has been one of the sunrise industries in the last 15 years the reimbursement package has been reasonably good. This has extravagant the standard of living and impacted the real estate industry certainly.

Hence, IT cities see high reality demand and supply? The price rise of anywhere between 10-15 per cent based on local demands and supply and quality of infrastructure. While advertising the end users and investors consider that real estate is a long term play that one needs to keep investing for reasonable span of time. Some of the major IT cities such as Pune, Bangalore, Bhuvneshwar, Chennai and many more offers the future investment decision will be worth allowing for.

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