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City all set to get more smart benches

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The Hindu        17.08.2017 

City all set to get more smart benches

The civic body plans to install smart tree benches at 30 more places in the city.M.PERIASAMYM_PERIASAMY   | Photo Credit: M. PERIASAMY

The estimated cost of each of the benches is around Rs. 4 lakh

After installing a solar panel topped structure as smart street bench at its main office, the Coimbatore Corporation has decided to go in for 30 more such benches.

With a solar panel as roof, people can sit at the smart bench and enjoy Wi-Fi connectivity. It has power points to charge phones or tablet computing devices. The Corporation has said that the benches to be installed could have a few sensors as well.

Sources familiar with the development said that the Corporation would install the benches in the wards that come under the area based development component of the smart cities project. The estimated cost of each of the benches was around Rs. 4 lakh.

The Corporation could go in for a public-private partnership model of development - meaning, the companies installing the smart benches could provide advertisement space or choose other advertisement mechanisms to recover the installation cost.

The Corporation was also giving the companies/contractors the freedom to modify the design of the benches. They need not be a replication of the one in the Corporation main office.

The Corporation had meanwhile called online for request for proposal for 10 such benches. The Corporation had said that the idea of a smart bench was to create a unique design that provided solar energy to power cell phones, Wi-Fi, LED lighting, and sensor data gathering gadgets.

The objective was to make streets and public properties smarter and greener with the proposed smart bench.

Sources in the Corporation, however, said that the civic body must first explain the purpose of and the benefit for the public from the smart bench in the main office. It should provide details like how many people had utilised the facility, charged their phone and was there a written feedback. They added that the Corporation should not rush into establishing more benches.


Civic body sends Rs. 12.15 crore proposal to govt. for zoo improvement project

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The Hindu            17.08.2017  

Civic body sends Rs. 12.15 crore proposal to govt. for zoo improvement project

Coimbatore Corporation to take up zoo modernisation under the Smart Cities plan.S. SIVA SARAVANANS. SIVA SARAVANAN  

After deciding to take up the zoo improvement project under the Smart Cities mission, the Coimbatore Corporation has sent the proposal for Rs. 12.15 crore to the State Government for approval. Sources in the Coimbatore Corporation said that the zoo designers/consultants, the corporation had engaged sometime last year, had submitted a plan, which they sent to the Central Zoo Authority for approval.

The plan was to annex the nearby VOC Park so that the total area of the zoo was around 10 acre.

This was to ensure that each animal/species had adequate free ranging area and that complied with the Authority’s norms.

The Authority sought a few clarifications, which the corporation had successfully addressed. Even as it awaited the Authority’s approval for redesigning the zoo, the corporation had sent the proposal under the Smart Cities mission to the State Government for financial approval.

The Coimbatore Smart City Limited, the special purpose vehicle created for executing projects under the Smart Cities mission, also approved of the proposal, the sources said.

Meanwhile, the corporation had relocated two camels and 28 goat to animal cattle shelter near Coimbatore and had planned to send a few more to another cattle shelter in Pollachi. It was also in talks with the Forest Department to see how it could rehabilitate feral and commonly found animals so that the number of animals and birds went down, the sources added.


SPV to be set up soon for smart city project

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The Hindu        06.07.2017   

SPV to be set up soon for smart city project

Landmark skyline:A view of Tiruchi cityPhoto: A. Muralitharan  

It is mandatory for implementing the project

The Tiruchi City Corporation has begun the process of forming a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for executing the Smart City project.

As per the policy documents of Smart Cities Mission of the Ministry of Urban Development, it is mandatory to float a SPV for implementing the project from planning to execution. It will plan, appraise, approve, release funds, implement, manage, operate, monitor and evaluate the smart city development projects.

The SPV will have a full time Chief Executive Officer with the nominees of State and Central governments, and it has to be registered with the Companies Act. Besides using the government grants for infrastructure building, the SPV will have powers to raise private equity and funds for the projects. These could be executed through joint ventures, subsidiaries and public-private partnership.

It is learnt that senior officials of Tiruchi Corporation visited Chennai on Tuesday for a discussion with the senior officials of the Commissionerate of Municipal Administration to evolve the modalities for forming the Special Purpose Vehicle.

N. Ravichandran, Commissioner cum Special Officer, Tiruchi Corporation, told The Hindu that he had received a detailed instruction manual for forming SPV. Steps had been initiated to register the SPV under the Companies Act.

A senior IAS officer would be the Chairman of SPV. Tiruchi Corporation Commissioner would be the Managing Director. The Central Government would also nominate a person for it. Similarly, a number of persons, who were directly associated with the Corporation, would be made as members.

Mr. Ravichandran said a clear picture on formation of SPV would emerge within a two weeks. Formation of SPV would be completed within July. A seven sq km area in and around Rockfort temple would be the focus of area development plan of the Smart City project. It would address all issues including traffic congestion, parking, open drainages, roads and others. Chathiram Bus Stand and Gandhi Market would also be remodelled.

The Government had asked to re-modify the Smart City proposal with some changes. The re-modified plan would be submitted to the State government within 15 days.


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