At last: an integrated action plan for infrastructure?

Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) Vice Chairman R Santhanam reiterated the need for an integrated action plan for the city’s infrastructure, particularly in the rapidly growing suburbs of Chennai, with over a million people moving there between 1991 and 2001. The city is expected to have 10 million residents twenty years from now, and unless concerted and integrated action is taken now to provide the right infrastructure, decongest roads and check the influx of population, the city will deteriorate even further. He also mooted allowing high rise buildings in the Chennai Metrpolitan Area (not without mass rapid urban transit systems like metros please!), developing satellite townships and preserving heritage buildings. The CMDA’s second Master Plan (Why don’t they share this with the public? Don’t we have a say? It’s our city! We pay the taxes.) with recommendations being finalized for building laws and zoning of land will take into account that Chennai is a category three seismic zone.

What really interested me beyond this information in the article yesterday in The Hindu was that Mr Santhanam was speaking at the World Habitat Day (Didn’t know there was such a thing! Would have attended.) celebrations last week, organized by Citizens Alliance for Sustainable Living (SUSTAIN) and the Southern India Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI). At the celebrations, both these organizations emphasised the need to maintain Chennai as one of the ‘Magnets of Hope’, which was the theme for the United Nation’s sponsored World Habitat Day. Mr Santhanam also spoke about the CMDA enabling proper housing for the city’s 8.2 lakh urban poor (that’s close to a million) currently living in high density and objectionable areas such as the river banks. What is even more interesting is that SUSTAIN and SICCI have signed a MOU with the city of Hamburg. Germany, to exchange ideas about good urban development practices such as integrated transport, environmental planning, water management and green businesses. Kudos to them for their initiative, and for arranging for Mr Santhanam to speak on the occasion. I for one would like very much to be involved with SUSTAIN an contribute to making the city a better place to live in. Anyone know how to contact them?

5 Comments so far

  1. Rajesh (unregistered) on November 30th, 2006 @ 9:37 pm

    Yeah. Everybody says we have to improve the infastructure, build better roads yada-yada-yada. Everybody already know this. Infact the educated public(by public I do not mean the BPL-poor people living in the streets) knew this 20 years ago. But the problem is nobody is taking action. Whats the point in just talking in the meetings. He is to take action. What do they expect?, the public should build the roads and lay water/sewage pipelines?.

    Please let this Vice-Chairman to take a look at Hindu- Letters to the editors from 20 years back.
    What ever he has said in that meeting has already been said.

    These stupid bureaucrats. I am just sick-and-tired of them.

  2. sj (unregistered) on December 1st, 2006 @ 3:53 am

    Chennai and its politicians have been saying this for many years I agree yet no one seems to be doing anything about this. They should try and restrict the influx of people into Chennai from the beggining letting the population increase is only going to create more problems. Chennai will turn into an even bigger cespool than it already is. The city does not have the ability to accomodate more people I don’t understand why satellite townships aren’t set up across India this would stop people migrating to the citys like zombies and stop cross state migration. I personally don’t find the concept of cosmopolitan a plus point its not necessary for a city to be regarded great if it isn’t. I mean Japan has many cities that are famous they are certainly not cosmopolitan they mainly have onyl Japenese people so why not in Chennai.

  3. ash (unregistered) on December 1st, 2006 @ 8:55 am

    Chennai sucks just like any other Indian metro city or should I say retro city, because thats whay they are. India sucks even with all the development, its one big mess. India should have been allowed to function as indepedant states and by that I mean each state would look after its own affairs and have immigration laws etc. Then there would have been rapid development in each region if this was done instead of merging all the states under the name India prior to independance this is how it was and that functioned well.

  4. Nilu (unregistered) on December 1st, 2006 @ 3:35 pm

    Yes, we should stop outsiders from coming in. Also, we should expel people who have sex with their cousins. Totally against Tamil culture, I tell you.

  5. sj (unregistered) on December 8th, 2006 @ 7:13 am

    Nilu I know you are really frustrated but I told you the solution for your problem visit the red house or don’t they have those in Chennai?

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