Andhra city project

Final masterplan handed over

An artist's impression of the Andhra Pradesh seed development masterplan. Covering a 16.9 sq km area, it is the final of three masterplans, including one for the entire city and another for the capital region.
An artist's impression of the Andhra Pradesh seed development masterplan. Covering a 16.9 sq km area, it is the final of three masterplans, including one for the entire city and another for the capital region.PHOTO: SURBANA JURONG

Final piece of six-month process to design state's new capital city given to chief minister

Capping a six-month-long process to design Andhra Pradesh's new capital city, Singapore has handed over the masterplan to develop the heart of Amaravati in southern India.

The seed development masterplan, covering a 16.9 sq km area, is the final of three masterplans, including one for the entire city and another for the capital region handed over in March and May respectively, created by Surbana Jurong.

This third masterplan includes government buildings and the Central Business District.

The project, which opens up business opportunities for Singaporean companies, is one of the largest infrastructure projects in India.

"What our planners are trying to do is to capture a vision and the aspirations of the people of Andhra Pradesh and, at the same time, create a foundation for a city which is vibrant, liveable and has good infrastructure, good economic development," Mr S. Iswaran, Second Minister for Home Affairs and Trade and Industry, said yesterday, after handing over the masterplan to Andhra Pradesh's Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.

"The next important stage is the development stage when plans are turned into reality.

"We are looking forward to continuing our partnership with Andhra," said Mr Iswaran.

Amaravati, named after an ancient Buddhist city, is being created from the ground up in the Guntur Vijayawada area after Andhra Pradesh lost its capital Hyderabad to the new state of Telangana, created last year. Geographically, Hyderabad falls under the new state.

Mr Naidu is seeking to lay the foundation stone, marking the beginning of construction, for the new city on Oct 22 and is looking at completing the first of five phases of the seed development masterplan that includes government buildings, by 2018 - ahead of state elections in 2019.

It is estimated that 300,000 people will be living in the city centre, which has been designed based on the principles of Vaastu - an ancient science of architecture.

Ahead of that, the Andhra Pradesh government will choose an Amaravati Development Partner to oversee the construction through a bidding process.

Urban planning is currently in focus in India with Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching an initiative to create 100 modern cities to cope with an urban population expected to grow from 31 per cent to 40 per cent by 2030.

Mr Teo Eng Cheong , chief executive of International Enterprise Singapore, said: "This masterplan demonstrates Singapore's capabilities and paves the way for future partnerships in India, across sectors such as urban planning, infrastructure and supporting services."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 21, 2015, with the headline 'Final masterplan handed over'. Print Edition | Subscribe