Himachal signs deal with Singapore for developing smart town

Shimla, Feb 27 (IANS) The Himachal Pradesh Housing and Urban Development Authority (HIMUDA) on Monday signed a deal with the Singapore government for developing a smart integrated township on the outskirts of Shimla town to decongest the state capital.

A memorandum of understanding was signed in the presence of Minister of Trade and Industry of Singapore S. Iswaran and state Urban Development Minister Sudhir Sharma here.

The Singapore government has committed to invest Rs 2,500 crore for developing the state’s first ‘smart hill town’ on 450 bighas of land, an official statement said.

Sharma told IANS the township would be developed at Jathiadevi near Jubbarhatti airport, some 20 km from here.

He said the town is expected to provide opportunities in hospitality, health and wellness and education sectors.

He said it would have a special economic zone, international education zone, integrated townships, an entertainment zone, a convention centre, parks and shopping malls.

The development of the integrated township is an ambitious project which would go a long way in decongesting this highly populated city, he said, adding there has been 10-fold increase in the population of Shimla that has resulted in congestion and over-utilisation of infrastructure.

Initially, Shimla was developed by the British colonial rulers for 25,000 people.

HIMUDA, which is headed by Sharma, has acquired 32 hectares of land for developing the township at Jathiadevi, which is connected by three national highways.

The state government had on September 8 last year signed a preliminary agreement with the Singapore firm for developing the township.

–IANS

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