A leader in converting heritage cities into smart cities, Japan would also provide financial assistance in making Chennai ‘smart’ besides bringing its world-class transport facilities like better parking management, improving the tube service, known in India as Metro rail, and rejuvenating the heritage structures without causing any harm to them.


Besides transport and infrastructure, Japan, once an agreement is signed after discussions, will provide assistance in constructing smart buildings by putting the available land to optimum use, better drainage system, construction of roads with ample space for pedestrians and those using cycles.

“Japan’s major cities like Tokyo boast of WiFi facilities across the city and Chennai could take a leaf out of it and replicate the success mantra.  If Japan’s participation is clinched, Chennai could boast of smart bus stops, bicycle sharing system, smart parking spaces, excellent waste management system and sustainable smart lighting,” the source said.

Already, Chennai Corporation is working on “non-motor policy” by encouraging cycle users and pedestrians giving them more space on the roads and the Japanese assistance would enhance the policy.  Japan’s participation in developing Chennai, as Smart City is significant since the country has world-class expertise in blending modernity and heritage alike.

The country’s conversion of its heritage city, Kyoto into a world-class city without touching its heritage had earned praise from world countries and Modi, during his maiden visit as PM of India had visited Kyoto to learn how Japan succeeded in its mission. Besides Chennai, Japan has shown interest in developing Varanasi, the home constituency of Modi and Ahmedabad, Modi’s hometown.