DMIC, 5 others in KPMG's most innovative 100 projects list

Global advisory firm KPMG has selected six upcoming urban infrastructure projects in the country, including the USD 90-billion Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), amongst its top 100 innovative global infrastructure projects.

Mumbai: Global advisory firm KPMG has selected six upcoming urban infrastructure projects in the country, including the USD 90-billion Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), amongst its top 100 innovative global infrastructure projects.

The DMIC project comes under the global connectivity list and is placed as the second most-innovative project among the 100 most innovative projects.

The development of sustainable urban infrastructure is one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century, the agency said while releasing the report titled Infrastructure 100: World Cities Edition here Tuesday.

The report was released at the World Cities Summit in Singapore recently.

The project will cut across five states, linking the Capital with Mumbai It has an influence area of 320 million people and plans to include a high-speed rail network for freight, a six-lane expressway and a 4,000-mw power station.

The corridor includes the development of industrial production centres along its length, including nine industrial zones and 24 new cities. The plan is to create a globally competitive business environment.

The other domestic projects in the list are the Chennai Solar Economic Zone (under the urban energy infra category) being developed by on a 312-acre site by GMR Solar. But when completed it will be a 3,700-acre zone intended to attract high-tech investment to the growth-corridor between Bangalore and Chennai.

The third is the Sabarmathi Riverfront Development Project (in the urban regeneration and environmental improvement initiative currently underway in Ahmedabad, involving reclamation of a 10.5-km stretch of the banks of the Sabarmathi to create public space for cultural and civic institutions.

The fourth project is the Gorai Dumping Ground Scientific Closure project in Mumbai (recycling and waste management), which has been used as a major dumping ground for waste. The site spans 19.6 hectares and has been operational since 1972.

The closure has had a major social impact as the dump was located next to residential areas, posing health risks and contaminating local water supplies.

Closure of the site in 2009 involved reforming the existing heap and sealing it off with impermeable surfaces. There are plans to install a power plant at the site which will run on methane gas generated by the decomposing rubbish, said the report.

The next is the Education City Dantewada in Chhattisgarh that will provide a polytechnic, a middle school, a sports complex, an industrial training institute with workshops and residential quarters for staff and students.

The sixth project is the New Delhi Sewerage Masterplan (recycling and waste management) being developed on a PPP model with Aecom, as the Capital's current sewerage system only connects 55 percent of its residents to the central network. The project seeks to cover the entire 1,500 sq km area of the Capital.

The report further notes that the current estimates suggest that the country's infrastructure deficit is creating significant challenges for sustained economic growth.

The government is planning to spend USD 1 trillion or around 10 percent of the GDP in ports, airports, highways, railways and other key infrastructure projects during the next five years.

"Country's need to boost economic growth combined with a growing population requires a globally competitive business environment with state-of-the-art infrastructure to facilitate both local commerce and foreign investment," KPMG India head, infrastructure advisory group, Arvind Mahajan said.

The project in the Infrastructure 100: World Cities Edition are made up of around 20 projects selected by independent judging panels of industry experts from Asia Pacific, the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Africa and are broadly listed under 10 categories, including urban mobility, global connectivity, urban regeneration, education, healthcare, water, new and extended cities, recycling and waste management, urban energy infrastructure, and communications infrastructure.

The top-ten projects include East side access project in New York; Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor; the Oresund Regional Development project in Denmark and Sweden; the Princess Nora Bint Abdul Rahman University for Women in Riyadh and the Royal London Hospital, London.

Tuas II Desalination Plant, Tuas, Singapore; the Tianjin Eco City, Tianjin, China; the deep tunnel sewerage system connecting Kranji to Changi, Singapore; the Cidade Intelligente Bezios project under the urban energy infra scheme in Brazil; and the BRICS Cable Project in South Africa and Mauritius are also among the top 10 projects.