Hyderabad: Vision 2020 and its master plans are now passé. It’s time for Vision 2030. And with various global agencies including the World Economic Forum (WEF) acknowledging Hyderabad as one of the fastest growing cities in the world, it is time to plan ahead now.
The rapidly developing city, which is also witnessing a swift growth in population, will have to look all around, identify its requirements and plan carefully ahead, apart from ensuring that the plans do not remain on paper.
A recent report on ‘Hyderabad, a Global City in the Making’ published by real estate and investment management firm JLL, delves into the 2030 theory and quotes the United Nation’s ‘World’s Cities in 2018’ data booklet, which says the population of Hyderabad has grown from 5.6 million in 2000 to 9.48 million in 2018 and was likely to reach 12.8 million by 2030.
The report goes on to say that while the city, during the last five years has been on a growth trajectory and had attracted huge investments from all major tech and financial companies of the world, this growth has induced more pressure on the existing social and physical infrastructure. The rapid population growth has also added to this pressure, the report said.
The WEF reckons Hyderabad as one of the fastest growing cities in the world from 2019 to 2035. And, to accommodate the needs of this fast growing city, JLL said that the broad requirements can be seen with urban real estate as a good indicator of the level, be it of civic services, market directions, urban management systems and livability. The report has also made a number of recommendations.
Decentralization of business hubs
Unlike Bengaluru, the Delhi-National Capital Region and Mumbai, Hyderabad has only one IT corridor in the western part of the city. This leads to congestion and one-dimensional development, JLL notes, saying that developers and corporate clients have to be given incentives to invest in alternative IT corridors such as Uppal and Shamshabad. The upcoming ‘Look East Policy’ can be used as a major tool for controlling further development of commercial and residential developments in the western part of Hyderabad and encourage these developments in the east, it says, adding that the excellent connectivity of the ORR should be utilized for this.
New infrastructure for suburbs
The report also calls for new infrastructure developments such as public transport and road network in the suburbs of the city. “Improvement in transport and water supply facilities at locations like ECIL, Ghatkesar, Kompally and Adibatla will improve the existing living conditions and also further boost real estate development. The existing roads have to be maintained properly for smooth flow of traffic within the city and reduce commuting time in the city,” it said.
Emphasis on social infrastructure
Calling for special emphasis on social infrastructure, JLL also suggests that it be made mandatory for developers to ensure open spaces, recreational centres and health and educational facilities. Parks, playgrounds and party halls are the need of the hour. Core city locations like Koti, LB Nagar, Secunderabad and Uppal and their surrounding locations need public parks on priority, the report said.
New technology for efficient management
Also stressing on introduction of urban infrastructure management technologies, the JLL report said Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, sensors and geospatial technology have to be used to gather accurate data and detect real time data on infrastructure problems to bring in efficiency in infrastructure management.
The city’s short term growth, the report points out, is strong as the city experienced good office space leasing of more than 7 million sqft in 2018, which is twice that of the 2017 figure. This indicates economic growth through increased earnings and demographic growth with increased employment.
“With short term dynamics in place, Hyderabad just needs that last push to build a sustainable living environment and become future proof. This is only possible through efficient implementation of urban infrastructure projects and development policies by the government and city authorities in collaboration with the citizens of Hyderabad,” the report says, adding that Hyderabad has the potential to become a model city if it pursues aggressively the path towards enhancing its living standards to global levels. “It will then become a role model for other cities to emulate,” the report concludes.