India : Lucknow: From art city to smart city… miles to go

The journey from a laid-back city of the era of Nawabs to a place with fast moving buses, radio taxis and women’s powerline, the transformation has been tremendous. But civic authorities and experts are yet to come up with a concrete plan for waste management, removal of traffic bottlenecks and encroachments.

After getting a lion’s share in the list of 90 cities shortlisted for the central government’s Smart City project so far, Uttar Pradesh is looking forward to becoming a ‘smart state’ dotted with mini-metropolitan cities well-equipped with modern infrastructure and facilities.

In Lucknow, a team of officials is working on the mantra ‘From an art to a smart city’ to transform the City of Nawabs into a bustling metro.

“The journey from a laid back city of the era of Nawabs with rickshaws and tongas on the streets to a place with Metro train, fast moving buses, taxis, 1090 women’s powerline, Dial 100 and 108 ambulance facility, the transformation has been tremendous. The city’s face will change in the days to come,” says additional municipal commissioner and urban planning expert PK Srivastava.

Lucknow has often been identified with its architectural wonders like Rumi Darwaza, Imambada and Satkhanda but in future it will be known for places like Awadh Point, Thandi Sadak, solar energy grid for metros, advanced metro train, 1090 women’s powerline,108 ambulance and Dial 100 systems, he says.

“The seat of power of the Nawabs in the 18th and 19th century will continue to maintain its heritage and culture but will also have latest developments under smart city. The stakeholders are planning to boost its rich culture, cuisine, business, infrastructure, education, tourism and music,” adds Srivastava.

The smart plan

The vision behind planning for Lucknow is the integration of the old and the new – be it culture, cuisine, linguistic heritage, tourism, infrastructure, civic development, drains and river – with the help of technology.

How the project was prepared

Since May 2016, when the name of Lucknow figured on the list of smart cities, all the stakeholders have been brainstorming on the steps to make the cultural hub into a smart city. For the first time, the people of Lucknow started believing that the laid back city had the potential to be at par with metropolitan cities like Mumbai or Delhi.

Urban planners and engineers have chalked out plans but the change is yet to reflect at the ground level.

A special purpose vehicle (SPV) was formed to give an impetus to smart city project.

How the plans were made

“Being a culturally rich city from the times of Lakshman, who founded the city to the era of Nawabs, a proposal was made to accommodate the sentiments of the people while making the city progressive and smart,” says municipal commissioner Udairaj Singh who played an instrumental role in the preparation of smart city project proposal.

“The proposal for Lucknow had to be started with the review and understanding of local needs, feedback and suggestions received from various bodies. These organisations included the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Regional Centre of Environment and Urban Studies (RCEUS), Department for International Development (DFID), Yes Bank and C40 – a network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change,” he says.

Singh adds during the preparation of the plan, a meaningful dialogue with citizens, urban planners, stakeholders and experts was held.

“This helped in forming a citizen-centric smart city proposal which can benefit all,” he added.


Source :

Smart Grid Bulletin July 2019

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