Top 10 Areas for Infrastructure and Development in India

Top 10 Infrastructure and Development Areas for India

  1. Quality of Life – Sufficient open spaces, facilities for outdoor activities
  2. Beautification – Infrastructural and activities development with i) Plantation, ii) At Sea-shore, iii) River-side, iv) New tourist destinations, v) International examples, vi) Ancient examples, vii) Others
  3. Education and Information Connectivity - to every town, village and city
  4. Transportation – Fast and Extended beyond Cities
    • Rail: 200-400 km/h speeds to spread cities
    • Road: Wide and no-stopping Expressways / Motorways connecting states and cities
    • Innovative ways for efficient connectivity in remote and difficult to reach areas
  5. Country-wide Water storage and Channelling - domestic, agricultural and other uses
  6. Sustainable – Green initiatives of energy production/usage and waste disposal
  7. Power/ Energy – Green, sustainable & Expansive initiatives
  8. Healthcare and Emergency response systems 
  9. Online presentation of government projects with public participation. Open indications of collections, investments and third-party quality assurance. Presentation of target set v/s achieved.
  10. Research Centres - for efficient, innovative and up-to-date projects / recommendations in infrastructure and development

Methods of infrastructure development at International level:

European Commission: Illustrations of the Green Infrastructure concept

What is Green Infrastructure?

Green bridges and eco-ducts re-connect natural areas that have been artificially divided, by roads or railway lines for example. They reduce accidents involving wild animals and cars – which in France alone, for example, caused damages of about 150 mio. EUR in total. Green bridges also allow animals to move easily and safely from one area to another, and help plant species to spread. This gives animals more space to find food and shelter, and allows populations of the same species to interact, improving the overall resilience of the species.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 1

Developments have to be made in a way that does not destroy the future potential of a site. With the right kind of planning, different needs can be taken into account, and the right balance can be kept. Investments can be made in every kind of environment – even in densely populated urban areas – in a way that is beneficial for people and the economy, while still leaving room for nature.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 2

Green Infrastructure is not only good for plants and animals: people too benefit from the recreational opportunities and the many 'unseen' positive effects it offers, such as cleaner air and water, better protection from floods and other natural disasters, and a continuous provision of scarce natural resources like water.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 3

Size matters: some birds need more than one tree to nest in – and sometimes they even need a forest. River ecosystems produce more fish when they aren't channelled, but kept in or restored to their natural course. In this picture, the hedgehog and the fox show that a single bush won't provide enough cover, but a series of bushes give prey more opportunities to hide from predators.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 4

The benefits of Green Infrastructure are felt on different scales. A floodplain forest doesn't only benefit local people by providing recreational areas: it also provides habitats for animals, helps protect larger areas from being flooded, and contributes to global climate change mitigation through carbon sequestration.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 5

Green Infrastructure can be many things, inside and outside protected areas, where the latter are the core features and the former are the corridors that connect them up to form a functioning network. It is a balanced system of protection and sustainable use and management.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 6

Different species and landscapes need and provide different types of connecting elements. This might involve isolated elements or stepping stones, like a group of trees for birds, or corridors that physically connect habitats, like rivers, including fish ladders on otherwise insurmountable barriers, or hedgerows, linking field and forest habitats.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 7

Using Green Infrastructure to restore degraded natural areas has many benefits. It creates a new space for animals, plants and leisure activities, and it allows nature to carry out its many roles, from purifying the water we drink and the food we eat to protecting us from floods and keeping us cool on hot days.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 8

Green Infrastructure helps prevent disasters. Forests that feature a good mix of species, age and structure absorb large quantities of water and protect the soil, preventing and reducing the impacts of floods and landslides.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 9

Green Infrastructure can be an integral part of urban areas. Properly designed parks, walking paths, green roofs and walls can all contribute to biodiversity and to tackle climate change. Green spaces in cities do significantly enhance the well-being of urban residents.

European Commission - Illustrations of Green Infrastructure 10


Quality of Life and Beautification:

Sabarmati Riverfront Development Corporation (SRFCDL)

Sabarmati Riverfront Development Corporation (SRFCDL)The development project encompasses both banks of the Sabarmati for a 10.5 kms. stretch, creating approximately 185 hectares of reclaimed land. The Fatewadi Canal is fed by water stored in the Vasna Barrage through releases from the Narmada Canal,  this made it possible to store water in the river for irrigation purposes - enabling a public waterfront.

A key element of the project is a new linear two-level promenade. The lower promenade with a minimum width of 10 meters, will be just above water level, providing uninterrupted pedestrian access to the water. The upper promenade will host a variety of public buildings, cultural and educational institutions, public parks and plazas and a few areas for commercial development

Sabarmati Riverfront Development Corporation (SRFCDL) - parasailing

Singapore's Deep Tunnel Sewerage System (DTSS)

DTSS is a cost-effective and sustainable solution designed to meet Singapore's needs for the collection, treatment and disposal of used water over the next 100 years.

Singapore Deep Waste Water Treatment Facility 1

The treated water is then discharged into the sea through deep-sea outfall pipes or channeled to a NEWater--Singapore's own brand of reclaimed water--plant on the rooftop of the reclamation plant. There, it is further purified through advanced membrane technologies.
The system works entirely by gravity, eliminating the need for pumping stations and risk of used water overflows.

Singapore Deep Waste Water Treatment Facility 2

Education and Information Connectivity for Rural Areas

Information needs of people in villages can be broadly listed as follows:

  • Health information on how individuals can, prevent different diseases that affect them, and awareness of available healthcare delivery and what it costs.
  • Agriculture and allied occupations: The greatest area of information needs by rural is in agriculture. Such information needs include planting treated seeds, soil conservation, prevention of plants and animal disease, fertilizer application, farm machineries, recommended thinning practices, proper storage of farm products, marketing techniques, cooperative activities and other agro-cultural activities.
  • Education: Information needs of the existing rural schools, needs of the illiterate's and semi-illiterates. They need to have relevant information that will develop in their interest and support of teaching and learning processes.
  • Housing: Rural public need information about where they can obtain loans to build houses and the type of materials to be used and where they can be easily obtained.
  • Employment: Rural communities need information on employment opportunities on taxation, investment opportunities, banking and other financial activities.
  • Transportation: They need information on the cost of bicycles, motorcycles and vehicles and where to obtain them. They need information about road construction and maintenance.
  • Religion, Recreation and Culture: Information is required on religions, recreations and cultural activities.
  • Welfare and Family matters: Information is required on problems of marriage, childcare, juvenile delinquency etc.
  • Legal matters: Information is needed on laws that affect the rural dwellers. Such law ranges from marriage to land.
  • Crime and Safety: Information is required on how to prevent crimes, report crimes, role of the law enforcement agents etc.
  • Policies and Government: Information is needed on political rights of the people and how they can exercise such right.
  • Land: Information is needed on land tenure systems, acquisition and transfer of land etc.

A sample areas of focus for rural development by European rural development project is shown below.

European Rural Development (ERD) Project - IIASA

Information may be channelized using following ways:

  • Community Information Centers
  • Libraries, books, education institutes
  • Information technology
  • Electronic and other mass media - radio, Kiosk, etc
  • Questions and Answers developed by agencies for various topics chosen by people
  • NGOs, Self-help-groups, Govt., Industry
  • National and International best practices

Literacy Bridge – Talking Book:
Talking Book – an innovative low-cost audio computer designed for the learning needs of populations in remotest areas. Provides comprehensive programs that provide on-demand access to locally relevant knowledge. Simple and actionable instructional messages that are repeatable and can be played when needed enable people to learn and adopt new practices to solve local problems.

Rural Kiosks in India
Many information kiosks (typically IP based intranet system) have put in place by government, entrepreneurs and others in recent times. Examples are given below.

  • Gyandoot, in a district in MP
  • Bhoomi, in a district in Karnataka
  • Akshaya, in a district in Kerala
  • Etc


Services offered at one type of kiosk:

  • Agriculture Produce Auction Centres Rates: Prevailing rates of prominent crops at the local and other recognized auction centres around the country, the volume of incoming agricultural produce, previous rates, etc.
  • Copies of Land Records: Documents relating to land records
  • On-line Registration of Applications: to file applications for obtaining income/caste/ domicile certificates
  • On-line Public Grievance Redress: A complaint can be filed and a reply received Village auction site: for land, agricultural machinery, equipment, and other durable commodities
  • Transparency in government: Updated information regarding beneficiaries of social security pension, beneficiaries of rural development schemes, information regarding government grants given to village committees, public distributions, data on families below the poverty line, etc. are all available on the Intranet, which makes the government functioning more transparent.


Quick Transportation for Expanding Cities Horizontally

High-speed rail operates at a speed of about 300+ km/h for the majority of installed systems in China, Germany, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, UK, with fastest being Shanghai Maglev Train reaching 431 km/h.
High-speed rail development started in 1903, an electrical railcar from AEG and Siemens & Halske achieved 203 km/h on the military railway track in Germany.
The Shinkansen trains built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries often called "Bullet Trains", outclassed the earlier fast trains in commercial service. The Japnese Maglev, French TGV and German ICE are some of the fastest trains currently.
High Speed Rail can be competitive with cars on shorter distances, 50–150 kilometres, for example for commuting, given road congestion or expensive parking fees.

Mumbai metro train

Commuter rail, also called suburban rail, is a passenger rail transport service that primarily operates between a city center, and the middle to outer suburbs beyond 15 km and commuter towns or other locations that draw large numbers of commuters—people who travel on a daily basis. Trains operate following a schedule, at speeds varying from 50 to 200 km/h.
Sometimes high-speed rail can serve daily use of commuters. The Japanese Shinkansen high speed rail system is heavily used by commuters in the Greater Tokyo Area. They commute between 100 and 200 km by Shinkansen. Several lines in China such as the Beijing–Tianjin Intercity Railway, and the Shanghai–Nanjing High-Speed Railway, serve a similar role. The high-speed services linking Zurich, Bern and Basel in Switzerland have brought the Central Business Districts (CBDs) of these three cities within 1 hour of each other.
Costs impact:
Due to high costs and safety concerns the top speeds in China were reduced to 300 km/h on 1 July 2011.
French TGV Sud-Est reduced the travel time Paris–Lyon from almost four to about two hours. Market share rose from 49 to 72%.
In Japan, commuter rail systems have extensive network and frequent service, and are heavily used. It is notable that many of them are run by private railway companies. In United States regional passenger rail services are provided by governmental or quasi-governmental agencies.
Urban density and mass transit have been key factors in the success of European and Japanese railway transport.


Water storage and Channelling

Water is being used from various domestic uses to agricultural needs. There are many places where people have to travel long distances to bring daily usage of water and are dependent heavily on seasonal rains. One of the methods of efficient water storage/channelling is discussed below.
Canals are man-made channels for water. There are two types of canal viz. Waterways (for carrying ships and boats) and Aqueducts (for the conveyance and delivery of potable water).
Aqueducts: water supply canals are used for the conveyance and delivery of potable water for human consumption, municipal uses, and agriculture irrigation. Rills and acequias are small versions.
Aqueducts were devised much earlier in India, where Harappans built sophisticated irrigation systems. Indian subcontinent is believed to have some of the earliest aqueducts. The massive aqueducts near river Tungabhadra (Hampi, Karnataka) supplying irrigation water were once 24 km long, supplying water to royal bath tubs.
In Oman from the Iron Age Period a system of underground aqueducts were constructed. This enabled large scale agriculture to flourish in a dry land environment.
In South America, ancient pre-Columbian systems of aqueducts are still in use today. They were made of intricately placed stones.


An acequia is a community-operated waterway used in Spain and former Spanish colonies in the Americas for irrigation.


A flume is an open artificial water channel, in the form of a gravity chute, that leads water from a diversion dam or weir completely aside a natural flow.


In modern times, the largest aqueducts of all have been built in the United States to supply the country's biggest cities viz.

a) Catskill Aqueduct carries water to New York City over a distance of 190 km,

b) Colorado River Aqueduct supplies the Los Angeles area nearly 400 km,

Parker Dam - Colarado river aqueduct

c) 1,129 km California Aqueduct runs from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta to Lake Perris,


d) Central Arizona Project stretches 540 km from its source,

e) An extensive canal system exists within the Imperial Valley in the Southern California desert to provide irrigation to agriculture within the area.
In US, Funds from the sale of general obligation and revenue bonds have provided most of financing for construction of the State Water Project. Full repayment of these bond funds is being made by Project beneficiaries, rather than by the general taxpayer.

In modern civil engineering projects, detailed study and analysis of open channel flow is commonly required to support flood control, irrigation systems, and large water supply systems when an aqueduct rather than a pipeline is the preferred solution.


There are many rural places which never saw electricity supply until recently. The power is also the need for the ever expanding cities and populous country such as India. At the same time sustainable means of power generation is required in order to protect ourselves and our environment.
Various sources of energy are given below:

Energy Sources


Fossil fuels

Oil (or crude oil)

Coal or natural gas

Mineral fuels

Natural uranium


Solar energy

Wind energy

Falling and flowing water, tidal energy

Biomass sources

Geothermal energy

Electricity is the one of the main needs for the people and industries in modern day society. Power is being generated in one of the following ways:

  • Fossil-fuel power stations may also use a steam turbine generator or in the case of natural gas-fired plants may use a combustion turbine. These have the side-effect of producing large amounts of pollutant gases contributing to global warming. About 50% of electric generation in the USA is produced by coal-fired power plants.
  • Nuclear power plants use a nuclear reactor's heat to operate a steam turbine generator. About 20% of electric generation in the USA is produced by nuclear power plants.
  • Geothermal power plants use steam extracted from hot underground rocks.
  • Biomass-fuelled power plants may be fuelled by waste from sugar cane, municipal solid waste, landfill methane, or other forms of biomass.
  • In integrated steel mills, blast furnace exhaust gas is a low-cost, although low-energy-density, fuel.
  • Waste heat from industrial processes is occasionally concentrated enough to use for power generation, usually in a steam boiler and turbine.
  • Solar thermal electric plants use sunlight to boil water and produce steam which turns the generator.

Example of comparative costs of power generation:


Costs are US$/MWh






Coal fired









Hydro, small scale



Nuclear, advanced



Solar, Concentrating PV



Solar, Parabolic trough



Solar, PV









Information, Research & Development organisations:

Renewable energy is energy which comes from natural resources such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, and geothermal heat, which are renewable (naturally replenished). While many renewable energy projects are large-scale, renewable technologies are also suited to rural and remote areas, where energy is often crucial in human development.
Small solar PV systems provide electricity to a few million households, and micro-hydro configured into mini-grids serves many more. Millions of households use biogas made in household-scale digesters for lighting and/or cooking.
In many urban areas, sustainable green buildings have been developed by ways such as storing and harvesting of rain water from roof top, use of solar cells, etc.

List of current departments for Infrastructure and Development:


Sr. No.

Departments / Divisions related to Infrastructure & Development


Links Address


Secretariat for Infrastructure, Planning Commission

  • Highways
  • Railways
  • Ports
  • Airports
  • Telecom
  • Power

Involved in initiating policies for creation of world class infrastructure, developing structures that maximize the role of public-private partnerships (PPPs) and monitoring progress of key infrastructure projects


Rural Development

Autonomous Bodies with participation from research institutes:

  • Council for Advancement of People's Action and Rural Technology (CAPART)
  • National Institute of Rural Development (NIRD) rural/index.php?id=1


Water Resources

Water Resources Management resources/index.php


Transport Department

Public transportation system transport/index.php


Government Schemes

A directory of links to govt schemes in various central and state departments of India schemes.php


Ministry of Urban Development

  • Technical wing of the Ministry of Urban Development, TCPO
  • Central Public Works Department (CPWD)
  • Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JnNURM)
  • Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Satellite Towns (UIDSST)
  • Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT)


RITES, Govt. Of India Enterprise

RITES provides comprehensive engineering, consultancy and project management services in the transport infrastructure sector.

  • Railways
  • Buildings and Airports
  • Ports & Harbour
  • Highways
  • Bridges & Tunnels
  • Urban Transport
  • Urban Planning
  • Ropeways
  • Marine Engineering
  • Export Packages
  • Waterways & Water Resources
  • Information Technology


Central Public Health and Environmental Engineering Organisation (CPHEEO)

Technical Wing of the Ministry of Urban Development, deals with the matters related to Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Including Solid Waste Management in the Country.

  •  Accelerated Urban Water Supply Programme (AUWSP) for small towns
  • Ministry Sponsored R&D Activities (by NEERI, Nagpur, by N.I.U.A., New Delhi)






List of consulting / monitoring agencies:

Sr. No.

Departments / Divisions related to Infrastructure & Development


Links Address


Planning Commission (Govt. Of India) – Transport Division

Plan and study various resources, address policies, coordinating with various transport ministries, etc.
(A) Transport
I. Railways
II. Roads
III. Road Transport
IV. Shipping
V. Ports
VI. Inland Water Transport
VII. Civil Aviation
(B) Construction Sector sectors/index.php?sectors=infra






Research and Development in Areas of Infrastructure and Development

R&D facilities are required with integrated collaboration among industrial companies, governmental agencies, universities, public participation and experience based knowledge from countries like Japan, US and others.



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Ranjana Pant Dass

Very informative &

Very informative & interesting

So Cool!

The most distinct part of India's physical infrastructure development in recent years is the development of road network across the country

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