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GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
MINISTRY OF HOUSING AND URBAN AFFAIRS
LOK SABHA
STARRED QUESTION NO: 234
ANSWERED ON:  22.12.2022
Cochin Smart City Project
Hibi Eden
Will the Minister of



HOUSING AND URBAN AFFAIRS be pleased to state:-



(a) whether the Government proposes to include child-friendly features in all Cochin Smart City projects;

(b) if so, the details thereof including the decisions, project list, estimated funds and challenges in this regard; and

(c) whether resting places for children would be constructed on footpaths of major roads under the project and if so, the details thereof?



ANSWER
THE MINISTER OF HOUSING AND URBAN AFFAIRS
(SHRI HARDEEP SINGH PURI)


(a) to (c) : A Statement is laid on the Table of the House.

STATEMENT

STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY OF PARTS (a) to (c) OF THE LOK SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO. *234 (14TH POSITION) FOR ANSWER ON 22.12.2022 REGARDING COCHIN SMART CITY PROJECT.

(a) to (c): Government of India launched the Smart Cities Mission (SCM) on 25 June 2015. 100 Smart Cities, including Kochi, have been selected through 4 rounds of competition from January 2016 to June 2018.

Projects of Kochi Smart City are being implemented by Cochin Smart Mission Limited (CSML), a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) created for the purpose. CSML aims to enhance core infrastructure of the city with primary focus on promoting sustainable and inclusive development in the densely populated areas of the city benefitting larger populations including young children and their caregivers.
Nurturing Neighborhoods Challenge is a 3-year old initiative of the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs (MoHUA) that aims to enable cities adopt an early childhood lens in designing neighborhood-level improvements that promote health and well-being of young children and their caregivers. A cohort of 25 cities was initially selected for capacity building to implement actions under the Challenge of which 10 cities viz. Bengaluru, Hubbali-Dharwad, Indore, Jabalpur, Kochi, Kakinada, Kohima, Rourkela, Vadodara, and Warangal were finally declared winners.
Inspired by the Nurturing Neighborhoods Challenge, CSML is incorporating young children and caregiver-friendly lens in a variety of its projects such as development of outdoor play spaces in Early Childhood Development (ECD) facilities, enhancing existing parks and public open spaces to suit the needs of young children and caregivers.
CSML, along with the Kochi Municipal Corporation (KMC), have also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with WRI India to help scale up young children and caregiver-friendly projects in Kochi. A Nurturing Neighbourhoods Cell consisting of members from CSML and KMC has been formed to formulate and implement such projects. This Cell reviews all ongoing initiatives, facilitates inter-departmental co-ordination, collection of relevant data, and ensures regular evaluation and monitoring of those projects. Details of projects benefitting young children and caregivers which have either been completed or are ongoing in Kochi Smart City are given below:-

(? in Crore)
S.No. Project Project Cost Status of Project
1. Development of Smart Roads in Ernakulam ABD 61.53 Completed
2. Open Space Corridor Linking from DH Ground to Mangalavanam 7.84
3. Development of Open Spaces, Playgrounds and Museum of Freedom Struggle in West Kochi 4.23
Total 73.60

4. Development of Parks & Open Spaces in Ernakulam Area Package-4 4.84 Work in Progress

5. Upgradation of Anganwadi’s in West Kochi under SCM, Kochi 2.18
6. Place-making and Beautification of Poovath Road and Durbar Hall Ground in Ernakulam ABD Area under SCM, Kochi 1.40
Total 8.42

Kochi Smart City is creating robust operational models for such projects and is trying to formulate city-level policies with needs of young children and caregivers at the core. It is also working to enhance capacity of relevant stakeholders to deal with such issues.

As part of ‘Development of Smart Roads in Ernakulam & West Kochi area’, all footpaths are being made child-friendly by installation of multi-heighted seating spaces, without obstructing movement of pedestrians. These benches made from 100% recycled plastic have been installed on the pedestrian walkway, wherever feasible, along Gandhi Square at Marine Drive. In addition, CSML is installing child-friendly street furniture across the city.

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