IIT Kharagpur’s Rekhi Centre of Excellence for the Science on Happiness submitted its final report for the New Town Happy City project to the Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation (Hidco), giving suggestions as to how New Town could be developed as a Happy City.
They started working on the report three years ago, in March 2017. The IIT team explored various issues, including subjective well-being, community infrastructure and other key issues related to New Town with the help of Hidco and NKDA officials in the last three years to come up with their report. The quality of life, subjective wellbeing, needs, aspirations, community facilities and infrastructure of New Town were assessed and evaluated in terms of other smart or smart-to-be cities in the country.
“The project was commissioned to find out ways as to how the happiness quotient among the residents of New Town could be maximised. A city or township could be termed happy by ensuring that its residents feel happy and love to live in that city or township for its various facilities,” said a Hidco official.
For example, a city could be termed happy by ensuring that citizens travel and commute from one place to another in less time as possible, having zero or less traffic congestion amd a sense of safety and security. Adequate recreational, sports, educational, entertainment and hospitality zones, civic amenities with maximum convenience and people-friendly civic facilities also make a city happy,” said an official.
Already, New Town received a happiness quotient of 6.4 out of 10 from IIT Kharagpur in its first assessment conducted last year. Hidco officials said that many initiatives have already been taken to fulfil the happiness quotient of New Town. “The township is being developed in a holistic manner with facilities and amenities for citizens of all age groups for a complete feel of well-being,” said a Hidco official.
Recreational zones like Eco Park, Eco urban village, centres like Nazrul Tirtha, Rabindra Tirtha, sports facilities like cricket and football stadiums and a golf range have been set up. Electric buses and vehicle charging stations have been introduced, a modern habitat for senior citizens, ‘Snehodiya’, and a senior citizens’ park, ‘Swapnabhor’, have been developed. Dedicated bicycle lanes and primary health care centres have also been set up.
“More such initiatives will be taken up based on the IIT suggestions to achieve a happiness quotient of at least 8 out of 10,” a Hidco official said.
Source: Times of India