Visakhapatnam to be developed on lines of Barcelona by Cisco, to become an example for the rest of India !
Visakhapatnam will be the first city to be taken up for development as a smart city by Cisco Systems, the global IT networking major and the implementing company. Cisco informed Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday that its development model for Visakhapatnam would be adopted in the other smart cities — Allahabad and Ajmer.
Cisco chief technology officer Padma Warrier and president (globalisation and smart+ connected communities) Anil Menon said the company would focus on setting up a skill development centre and providing training through its global talent tracker. The company is also keen on working with the state government to digitise education and healthcare.
Cisco is mulling setting up an incubation centre, either at Tirupati or Visakhapatnam, and living labs on the lines of those in Barcelona. Naidu said a task force would be set up for the purpose. What are smart cities?
A 'smart city' is an urban region that is highly advanced in terms of overall infrastructure, sustainable real estate, communications and market viability. It is a city where information technology is the principal infrastructure and the basis for providing essential services to residents. There are many technological platforms involved, including but not limited to automated sensor networks and data centres. Though this may sound futuristic, it is now likely to become a reality as the ‘smart cities’ movement unfolds in India.
In a smart city, economic development and activity is sustainable and rationally incremental by virtue of being based on success-oriented market drivers such as supply and demand. They benefit everybody, including citizens, businesses, the government and the environment.
The concept of smart cities originated at the time when the entire world was facing one of the worst economic crises. In 2008, IBM began work on a 'smarter cities' concept as part of its Smarter Planet initiative. By the beginning of 2009, the concept had captivated the imagination of various nations across the globe.
Countries like South Korea, UAE and China began to invest heavily into their research and formation. Today, a number of excellent precedents exist that India can emulate, such as those in Vienna, Aarhus, Amsterdam, Cairo, Lyon, Málaga, Malta, the Songdo International Business District near Seoul, Verona etc.