Socio-economic data to guide digitised mapping of urban India
By Smita Aggarwal Indian Express
Moving away from a state-controlled development of a city,
municipalities will now map their cities on the basis of
socio-economic parameters like health, education, religion, disaster
management and even terrorist activity.
This information will be processed and digitised to generate a Geographical Information System
(GIS) map to depict multiple variables on a single image, at the click
of a button.
In a novel approach, the local administration will generate data
related to terror history of a place, mapping potential terror risk
sites and devising appropriate response management system. The
systematic plan ascertains whether administration has a role to play
in such situations, detailing equipment and manpower required for
effective handling. Not only that, Urban Local Bodies (ULB) will
perform periodic drills to check preparedness levels.
Similarly, city areas prone to natural disasters like earthquake,
flooding, fire and landslides will be mapped – complete with a
response system and officials responsible. All this is part of a new
initiative undertaken by the urban development ministry.
Under the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government’s flagship Rs
50,000-crore Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM),
the ministry will encourage cities to come up with a comprehensive
city development plan (CDP) as against the traditional land-use plan.
A development plan is an essential document to be prepared by cities
to avail of central funds under JNNURM.
The plan seeks to map city’s socio-economic infrastructure like
availability of basic healthcare and education – whether municipal
schools and basic health clinics are located in the vicinity of
informal or formal urban poor settlements.
As this data is generated, layer by layer, it will be mapped on to the
physical and political map of the city. For instance, at the click of
a button, it will bring up city areas inhabited by the poor, areas not
covered by the municipalities’ health and education initiatives, and
with little or no access to clean drinking water facility.
The CDP aims to integrate socio-economic development with
infrastructure development by demarcating spaces for industry and
services in the city, providing required infrastructure and
streamlining licensing process through single window clearances. In
urban centres, coupled with availability of skilled workforce, such
initiatives will attract investment from retail industry and services
A CDP enables these cities to look at local economic development in a
strategic manner. Towards this end, the ministry has asked private
consulting firm Pricewaterhouse Coopers to come up with a CDP toolkit
modelled on socio-economic development parameters. Thereafter, a
committee consisting of town planners, local and central government
representatives will ratify the detailed plan, before it is
disseminated to the cities.
PwC principal consultant Kaustabh Basu told The Indian Express that
the initiative is aimed at enabling the third tier of governance –
municipalities – to make the transition from a Master Plan-based land
use to a development-based city planning. “The CDP will focus on
identified and prioritised local needs, taking into consideration
local resources, searching for cost-effective solutions, and
addressing causes, rather than just allocating capital expenditure for
dealing with symptoms,” he said.
Once such a mapping is complete, it will help to speed up economic
development delivery by providing a tool that guides investment to
arrive at realistic project proposals taking into consideration the
availability of limited resources.
Cities will be mapped on parameters such as health, education,
religion, disaster management and even terrorist activity. This
information will be processed and digitised to generate a Geographical
Information System (GIS) map
What is CDP?
A comprehensive city development (CDP) enables cities to look at local
economic development in a strategic manner. A development plan needs
to be prepared by cities to avail of central funds under JNNURM
What it does
The CDP aims to integrate socio-economic and infrastructure
development by demarcating spaces for industry and services in the
city. Such initiatives would attract investment from retail and
Such a map would help speed up delivery of investment by providing a
tool that guides investors at arriving upon realistic project
proposals while taking into consideration the availability of limited