Smart City: Government released 13 fast track cities; Lucknow, Ranchi and Bhagalpur included


New Delhi: Country’s 13 fast-track new smart cities have been announced today. All cities were selected on the basis of fast-track competition. Lucknow topped the list of winner of the competition conducted for 23 cities from different states and union territories. Union Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu announced the winners at a media conference.

Lucknow, Faridabad, Dharmashala, Chandigarh, Raipur, New Town Kolkata, Panaji, Ranchi, Bhagalpur (in Bihar), and Warangal (in Telangana) are among the 13 new cities that have been selected under the Smart City scheme. The other cities in the list which were finalised through a "fast track competition" are Port Blair, Imphal, and Agartala.

The 13 cities have proposed projects involving a total investment of Rs 30,229 crore.  The earlier 20 cities had proposed an investment of Rs 50,560 crore.

Smart cities are picked though a two-stage process. In the first stage, a state shortlists potential cities and send the names to the Centre. In the second round, these nominated cities compete with each other.

The selection is based on the scores cities get for carrying out urban reforms in areas including sanitation and governance. Each city will be given Rs 500 crore by the Centre over five years. The states will have to make a equal contribution.