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Smart city: USTDA initiatessupport for second phase

Development works groundbreakings

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency has launched the second phase of its support of the City of Visakhapatnam’s efforts to build safe, efficient and integrated urban infrastructure.

Since the launch of the project, the U.S. companies – led by AECOM and including KPMG and IBM – have been working closely with leaders from the State of Andhra Pradesh and the city of Visakhapatnam.

Together, they have begun to identify the planning and investments required for sustainable growth and modernising the city, working towards the goal of making the city a clean commerce capital.

In addition to refining this vision, the first phase evaluated the city’s infrastructure and identified sector-specific opportunities, assessed institutional and regulatory frameworks and developed action plans for three near-term projects.

Commenting on the work, Municipal Commissioner M. Harinarayanan told The Hindu, “The USTDA Project is basically focussing on developing the entire area surrounding Visakhapatnam to develop a master plan to make it a holistic smart city.”

The next phase of the project will deliver an Integrated Smart City Master Plan that will not only recommend planning frameworks for the entire city, but also develop specific recommendations to grow four key urban centres. It will include integrated analyses and recommendations across eight priority smart city components.

This includes critical infrastructure such as transportation, water supply, sanitation and energy, as well as citizen-focused areas like social infrastructure and resilience planning.

“This project has been impressive in achieving a balance between comprehensive urban planning – which will lay the foundation for long-term growth – and identifying opportunities to improve the lives of Vizag’s citizens in the near term,” said USTDA Director Leocadia I. Zak in a statement. “We are certain that with the expertise of this exceptional team of U.S. companies, and the ongoing commitment of our Indian partners, USTDA can continue to support Vizag in its ambitious smart city objectives – an effort in which we are proud to partner,” she adds.

“AECOM is proud to lead this important next phase of the Vizag work made possible by the leadership of Chief Minister Naidu and his colleagues in Vizag,” said Michael S. Burke, AECOM’s Chairman and CEO. “We thank USTDA for seeding the development of a smart infrastructure roadmap that can enhance the liveability of this urban centre for years to come.”

This continues USTDA’s efforts to identify U.S. solutions that can support India’s goals of developing smart cities.