Smart cities shall consist both of existing cities that shall be upgraded to become smart cities and formation and development of new cities. The former cities shall be termed as Brownfield projects while the later one shall be called Greenfield projects. The first smart city that is being ambitiously developed in the state of Gujarat is called Dholera Special Investment Region. It currently hosts a population of about 2,500 residents and is estimated to host about 10-12 lakh people by 2030, a vast plan in the making. Other smart cities under development include Gujarat International Finance-Tech city (GIFT) in Gujarat and Shendra-Bidkin in Maharashtra.
Union urban development ministry had recently asked the state governments to nominate the cities and towns for inclusion under the ‘Smart City’ mission. The nominations were dependent upon qualification under four main criteria and 13 sub criteria. Financial strength of the local bodies and adoption to e-governance technology were also major determinants to a city’s qualification to nominate under smart city plan.
The four main criteria included existing service levels in city, institutional system and capacities, self-financing and past track records and reforms. 25,15,30 and 30 marks were respectively allotted for each criteria and cities had to qualify with passing marks in each of them.
While the state capitals and Tier 1 cities filed tier nominations for Smart city plan, the small town of Kolhapur in Maharashtra was not far behind. The Kolhapur Municipal Corporation (KMC) had done extensive preparation to nominate itself for the project. The authorities were sure about scoring good marks in most of the criteria and get it nominated.
“There are 13 sub-criteria and we fulfill most them. We are preparing to fulfill other criteria such as publishing monthly e-newsletter and implementation of Right to Service Act by July 10, which are essential to qualify. We have witnessed a trend of increase in the KMC’s income since the last three years. We have an online portal that is active and have also displayed the budgets of the civic body on it. The grievance redressal system is not operational, but we will make it functional soon. We will publish e-newsletter of the KMC by July 10 and have taken steps in this direction, said Additional municipal commissioner Nitin Desai.
The need for development of smart cities was much felt when the urbanization rose at an exponential rate. As per statistical data, population residing in urban India in 1901 was 11.4% which grew to 28.53 % a decade later in 2001. This increased and breached the 30% mark by 2011. As per survey a by UN State of the World Population report in 2007, the urban population shall increase to 40.76% of the total population of India by the year 2030. This inevitably called for a full proof plan to accommodate the increasing numbers.
100 smart cities shall be built over the next few decades that shall be detrimental for the economic growth of the country.
Angry Anserson and Matt Sorum
Image by Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer
Hard Rock Cafe Darling Harbour Media And Celebs Event; Sydney, Australia by Eva Rinaldi
The world famous Hard Rock Cafe has returned to ‘Sin City’ Sydney with a vengeance, based on tonight’s launch event at the brand new Darling Harbour venue.
Hard Rock put on quite a show and rolled out the celebrities and live music including: Hamish Dodds, Matt Sorum, Dave Rich, DJ Lethal, Stan Walker, Angry Anderson, L Huntly, Sarah McLoed, Hamish Rosser, Altiyan Childs, Kris Peterson and Stim McLean. Most of them had turns smashing guitars, which is a trademark of opening new Hard Rock Cafes.
We all know that the cost of living and setting up a business in Sydney is considerable, but Hard Rock is certain their latest Australian venture will be a smashing (as in guitar) success. Sydney is one of the busiest markets anywhere globally for the Hard Rock Cafe, says the global chief of the music-themed burgers and ribs franchise.
Hamish Dodds, prez and chief exec of Hard Rock International, advised staffing costs down under in Australia make Hard Rock’s Sydney operations expensive compared with other global locations, and they are comparing to its other 172 venues which include cafes, hotels and even land based casinos. Yes, casinos, but Australia’s The Star and Crown Casino need not worry, as they have no plans for gaming in Australia – at least not any they are talking about.
Hard Rock International is owned by the well known and respected Seminole American Indian tribe, which purchased the global Hard Rock brand in 2007 after successfully running two Hard Rock hotel and casino operations in Florida in the U.S.
"For us this is an English-speaking country and people understand the history of rock," Mr Dodds said in Sydney on Tuesday ahead of the grand opening of the 500-seat venue in the Darling Harbour entertainment hotbed.
"Part of the downside of this market is it’s a mature economy – staffing costs in this market are very different to what we would experience in India.
"I would say the price mark-up here is about 50 per cent higher than the US – this is probably one of the most expensive markets we have in our portfolio."
Mr Dodds advised the Sydney Hard Rock Cafe was priced at a similar level to comparable restaurants in the area and he expected business to be brisk, averaging between 300 to 700 main meals a day.
Sydney would be among the top ten performers in the global network, he said, and among the top five of franchised outlets.
Tonight signified a return to Sydney for the Hard Rock franchise, which closed its previous venue in East Sydney in 2007.
Mr Dodds said Hard Rock had returned to Sydney with a revised and smarter strategy.
He said the former business was in a great location for the 1980s when the brand was fresh and people would go to the Hard Rock Cafe.
"Copycats harmed Hard Rock’s own business and the market changed to the point where we found ourselves in a B minus location and to a degree we lost a bit of relevance", Mr Dodds said.
The firm bought back its Sydney franchise in 2007 and has been revived by director and franchise holder Lennie Huntly, former GM of the Sydney business during the 90s.
Mr Huntly, who also holds the franchise for the Hard Rock Cafe in Surfers Paradise, said he had been thinking about re-opening a Sydney Hard Rock Cafe since the last one closed.
The waterfront location and views over Darling Harbour are a huge plus and soon a live music stage and 600-person music area will be rocking and rolling.
"We are focused on not only being about lunch and dinner," he said.
Mr Huntly also has the rights to open venues in Melbourne, Cairns and Perth. Melbourne’s former venue closed in 2007, but that doesn’t mean it will return with a hit.
Well done to the good folks at Hard Rock Cafe and we look forward to meeting up with the great guys and girls there again soon. Rock on.
Hard Rock Cafe International
Darling Harbour official website
Guns and Roses
Eva Rinaldi Photography Flickr
Eva Rinaldi Photography
Media Man News
Music News Australia