Smart City plan: Mangalore banks on 2 hamlets
Mangalore pitching for Smart City scheme
Population is the issue for Mangalore even though thickly populated areas like Ullal, Mulki which are continuity of Mangalore are still outside Mangalore City Corporation. Still Mangalore has advantage on following grounds compared to many of other cities of South India.
1. Availability of International Airport with good traffic.
2. Good per capita income compared to other cities of the state except Bangalore. This will ensure return on investment to private players of smart city domain who want to provide relatively costly facilities.
3. Availability of plenty of water to cater to the need of growth in population as an effect of becoming smart city. If goal of the smart city is to ensure growth of population in cities where water is available easily then Mangalore has a definite advantage here.
4. Mangalore has already won so many awards on sanitation front. Sanitation awareness is high.
5. Healthcare industry is well developed in the region.
6. Coastal region of Karnataka has already surplus power although the power preferably supplied to other regions of state. And if power is produced by importing coal or gas then Mangalore has port for it. As port, power plant and consumers are staying nearby there will not be much transmission loss. Also Mangalore an advantage of saving on transportation of fuels being a hub of petrochemical industry.
7. Mangalore has many well known pilgrimage centers in its vicinity.
8. Growing Petrochemical Industry although PCPIR tag is missing.
9. Moreover India needs more coastal cities like China if it wants to compete with China on export.
But foreign investors seems to be more interested in investing in the region were they have made investments in industries already. In this case Mangalore has disadvantage. The UK may be a option as it has invested through a few companies here though insignificant.
One more main disadvantage is poor road infrastructure. If smart city means investment in road then Mangalore needs it.
But as land is costly no new industrial city can be developed easily. So the current Mangalore itself has to become smart.