Lifeline of High-tech Cities
A Smart City cannot be complete without proper implementation of smart transportation, because it is going to be the lifeline of these high-tech cities. Whether you talk about a western model or look at the Smart Cities notion, it is in the context of the concepts which are already being implemented or are under implementation in India. Already, we see Metro lines, which are working well here. In addition, we have certain concepts like Intelligence Traffic Management System, which is in place. Then, we are also looking out at GIS tracking. These days, many transportation vehicles, including DTC, are seriously contemplating and the government is also coming up with various regulations in this respect.
Integration of Plans
The Government has launched several important schemes like Make in India, Digital India, Skill India and Swachh Bharat. Smart transportation for smart cities is an integration of all these. It is not merely for transportation of a city, but also for creating jobs in the country, and of course ensuring low pollution. Moreover, it is also for building keys to manage it all. However, in the first perspective, the clear picture is that it’s not a standalone scheme. The erstwhile Planning Commission had also prepared a very comprehensive report on urban transportation.The Smart Cities can be classified into five categories: metros, emerging cities, temple cities, hilly districts and the coastal districts, having different transportation requirements. For each vertical, we need a different configuration. If you have smart transportation, obviously, there will be no traffic congestion and pollution level will be low.
IT in Transportation
Transportation is a very complex topic to be talked about. By 2050, the urban population is expected to increase by up to 70 per cent and the urban areas are likely to get multiplied by three times. Also, the 75 per cent of infrastructure that is needed is still not built and that is why the notion of Smart Cities is very important. The transportation is most important and all the four pillars of comprehensive development, i.e. social, institutional, physical and economic, are fixed by a steel frame of governance, smart technology and information technology. Even in the core infrastructure flagged by the Ministry of Urban Development, efficient urban mobility and public transport connected by robust IT connectivity is a key factor. The transportation in a Smart City should be regional and jointly worked out by urban and transport planners.
When we talk about Smart Cities, we talk about safer living. 150,000 people die every year on Indian roads and most of them die in these 100 cities, which we are planning to be develop as smart cities. `54,000 crore has been earmarked for Smart Cities project, but as per the World Bank, we lose `150,000 crore every year because of transportation, road accidents and deaths. Smart transportation system is a combination of intelligence, low-carbon energy and adaptable services. It’s a connected, integrated and automated system to better serve the interest of users and be responsive to the needs of travellers. Every year, we lose `90,000 crore due to traffic congestion, but with smarter transportation around, we can save a lot of energy, money and resources. If technology is used in urban transit systems, there would be various benefits like safety, convenience and efficiency.
Smart transportation is one of the important verticals of smart cities. When technology comes into picture, we have to identify how it enters into transportation. We have GIS system, GPS, RFID, etc. All these technologies are enabling us to monitor and track our assets around the world. Then, what is smart technology for a common man? Can we get the prediction of congestion, see availability in the buses, etc. These are the things we talk about from the common man’s perspective. DIMTS is leveraging geo-spatial technology in transit. We have location-based service products, which are running in 1,300 plus buses in Delhi. We are involved in other business like identity management, driving license, etc. We also have our mobile app: ‘Next- Bus Delhi’ for delivering the bus-related information.