Trần Vĩnh Tuyên, vice chairman of HCM City People’s Committee, tells the Thanh Niên (Young People) that a smart city will vastly modernise and improve living standards.— Photo khampha.vn
Trần Vĩnh Tuyên, vice chairman of HCM City People’s Committee, tells the Thanh Niên (Young People) that a smart city will vastly modernise and improve living standards.
What are the aims behind municipal authorities coming up with a project proposal for building ‘a smart urban city’?
Given the challenges HCM City has been facing, authorities see the proposal as an imperative, in order to help the city develop rapidly, yet sustainably, providing convenient services to its residents.
One of the reasons that have dragged the city’s progress is rapid population increase. This is behind several problems, including traffic congestion, water clogging, environmental pollution and others.
So city authorities decided to improve urban management, including its planning process.
In our meetings, we have repeatedly emphasised the importance of having reliable forecasts– a foundation for coming up with workable strategies and policies to solve problems at their root and help us come up with a sustainable socio-economic development strategy.
Can you elaborate on the ‘smart city’ that HCM City wants to become?
The smart city that we want is one what widely applies advanced information technology in all administrative offices as well as in all activities impacting the lives of citizens and society as a whole.
We believe that urban management will gradually change from a passive to an active, positive approach. City authorities will collect information/data from various sources, analyse it and use final results to develop different scenarios for the city’s future development.
When can the public see the first draft of a smart city plan?
HCM City is a very big city. So we’ll need a lot of time to collect good information, process it and come up with our projection plans, as well as an implementation strategy. So our first priority is to develop an information centre for various purposes, including urban infrastructure, population, public investment management, land management and others.
Such a centre, I feel, is a pre-requisite for the establishment of an operating centre for a smart city.
Currently, information technology is widely applied by all authorities at the district level in managing, monitoring and handling administrative procedure, but the level of synchronisation is not high and we lack a common data base.
We have decided that by next year, the city will be able to select a contractor to build four such information centres at the local level. If things go smoothly, by 2025 HCM City will basically be a smart city.
What are the tangible benefits that city residents will receive from this project?
Our vision in this project is to put the people at the centre. So they will live and work in a better environment. More importantly, they will be invited to participate in all supervision missions, management and other activities of the city.
Living in a smart city, all administrative procedures will be settled quickly and efficiently online. In other words, when the project to build HCM City into a smart city is completed, with just one piece of electronic equipment, people can sit at home and select the service they want and it will be delivered to their door. — VNS