Kathmandu, March 31

The Development and Technology Committee under the Federal Parliament has directed the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) to frame an integrated blueprint for all the proposed smart cities across the country.

A meeting of the committee held today also directed the government to prepare an integrated framework on new urban cities including emerging cities in the Tarai, Hilly and Mountain regions to balance the pattern of city development.

Kalyani Khadka, president of the committee, said that the government needs to be serious on the development of smart cities. “The government’s plan to develop smart cities has not seen any progress till date as it lacks proper homework and enough groundwork.”

Earlier, the Kathmandu Valley Development Authority (KVDA) had started a study on developing four smart cities in Kathmandu Valley and had said that it would complete the detailed project report within this year.

The authority has designated four areas in the Valley’s east, west, north and south to develop proposed satellite smart cities.

In Kathmandu Valley, the smart cities will span over a total area of 130,000 ropanis, with the biggest smart city located in North-East of Kathmandu Valley covering 100,000 ropanis of land and the other three cities spread over 10,000 ropanis each.

Moreover, the government has planned to build 15 new cities in the hilly areas of 11 different districts. The MoUD has planned to establish the new cities under a programme titled ‘Himali Trans Trail Cities’, which will include different high-hill districts.

As per the plan, MoUD has selected Lukla of Solukhumbhu; Nung Valley and Kimathanka of Sankhuwasabha; and Fungling, Ghunsha and Olanchungola of Taplejung in Province 1. Likewise, Syafrubesi of Rasuwa district and Jiri of Dolakha district have been selected in Province 3.

Moreover, Jomsom and Kagbeni of Mustang district and Chame of Manang district have also been selected in Province 4.

Likewise, Simikot of Humla district and Dunai of Dolpa district in Karnali Province and Martadi and Kolti of Bajura district have also been selected in Province 7.

The government has planned to conduct a study to build integrated settlements in new cities with needed infrastructure and also develop them as new tourism destinations.

In 2011, the government had planned to develop 10 new cities along the Mid-Hill Highway.

However, since the responsibility to develop those 10 cities has been assigned to the respective provincial governments, the federal government has chosen these new cities.