Though implementation of the proposals got off to a good start, they did not make progress due to various reasons
The slow progress of smart city projects has caused concern among residents of Tiruchi.
While Chennai, Coimbatore and Madurai were selected for Smart City Mission in 2016, Tiruchi got its place in the next list released by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) in 2017. Tiruchi is among the 11 cities in the State that made it to the list of Smart Cities Mission.
It took nearly a year for the Corporation to short-list the projects to be taken up under the mission. The civic body finally unveiled a set of projects in 2018 after getting clearances from the State government.
The Rockfort Tourism Development Project and the Uyyakondan River Front Development Project were among the first projects unveiled.
The civic body subsequently came up with a few more proposals including the remodeling of Chathiram Bus Stand and construction of a commercial complex at Thillai Nagar.
Though the implementation of the projects got off to a good start in the beginning, they did not make progress as expected due to various reasons.
According to sources, about 20 projects are under progress in the city. But, it is said that most of the projects have been making slow progress.
The Uyyakondan River Front Development Project and the re-modelling of Chathiram Bus Stand, which were supposed to have been completed much earlier, have just now reached the final stages of construction.
The Rockfort Tourism Development Project has not been taken off.
The slow pace of implementation of the projects reflected in the recent declaration of Smart Cities ranking awards for 2020 announced by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) as well. The Tiruchi Corporation got none of the awards instituted by the Ministry on various heads.
“Almost five years have gone by since Tiruchi was selected for the implementation of the Smart City Mission. But, it is appalling to note that none of the major projects has been completed yet,” says N. Jamaludeen, a civic activist.
There were voices that some of the ongoing projects had not matched the motto and aims of the Smart City Mission.
M.A. Aleem, Member, District Welfare Committee, says special attention must be paid to implement all smart city proposals.
“It is happy to note that K.N. Nehru, Minister for Municipal Administration, had conducted review meetings on the progress of the projects. The resources of Smart City Mission must be tapped well to transform Tiruchi as a model city on various aspects of civic and basic infrastructure,” he adds.
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