Amaravati

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Amaravati
Dhyana Buddha at Amaravati.jpg
Front view of Amaravati Gopuram.jpg
I love Amaravati at Tadepalli (2018).jpg
High Court of Andhra Pradesh, Amaravati (May 2019) 2.jpg
Group D officer's quarters under construction in Amaravati (March 2019) 05.jpg
Amaravati 1.jpg
Discription plate, Amaravati stupa. at Amaravati. A (12).JPG
Amaravati Stupa in AP W IMG 8075.jpg
Amaravati is located in Andhra Pradesh
Amaravati
Amaravati
Location of Amaravati in Andhra Pradesh, India
Amaravati is located in India
Amaravati
Amaravati
Amaravati (India)
Amaravati is located in Asia
Amaravati
Amaravati
Amaravati (Asia)
Coordinates: 16°32′28″N 80°30′54″E / 16.541°N 80.515°E / 16.541; 80.515Coordinates: 16°32′28″N 80°30′54″E / 16.541°N 80.515°E / 16.541; 80.515
CountryIndia India
State Andhra Pradesh
RegionCoromandel
DistrictGuntur
MissionSeptember 1, 2014 [1]
EstablishedOctober 22, 2015
Founded byN. Chandrababu Naidu
Named forAmareshwara swamy
Government
 • TypePlanning agencies
 • BodyAPCRDA
Area
 • Capital City of Andhra Pradesh217.23 km2 (83.87 sq mi)
 • Metro8,352.69 km2 (3,224.99 sq mi)
Population
 (2011)[4]
 • Capital City of Andhra Pradesh103,000
 • Metro5,800,000
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Pincode(s)
520 XXX, 521 XXX, 522 XXX
Vehicle registrationAP-7, AP-8, AP-39[6]
Official languagesTelugu
WebsiteAmaravati official website
  1. ^ The Amaravati metropolitan area also includes portions of Amaravathi, Guntur, Vijayawada, Tenali, Gudivada, Tadepalle, Jaggayyapeta, Mangalagiri, Mopidevi, Nuzvid, Ponnur, Sattenapalle, Challapalle, Nandigama, Ghantasala, Vuyyuru adjoining the APCR.

Amaravati is the state capital of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, and the primary city of the state's Capital Region. Built on allotted space on the southern banks of the Krishna River in Guntur district,[7] and close to the geographical center of the state,[8][9] Amaravati is a recently-constructed planned city.

The city was constructed to serve as Andhra Pradesh's new capital after Telangana was split off as a separate state in 2014. The former Andhraite capital, Hyderabad, is now the capital of Telangana. In response, Amaravati was founded by N. Chandrababu Naidu in the same year 2014 as the Greenfield administrative capital city of the Andhra Pradesh state, and its foundation stone was laid at Uddandarayunipalem by the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi on 22 October 2015.[10] The city is built on 217 square kilometres (84 sq mi) of riverfront designed to have 51% green space and 10% of water bodies.[2][11]

As of October 2016, the majority of departments and officials of the Andhra Pradesh State Government are operating from the interim Andhra Pradesh Secretariat facilities located in the Velagapudi area of Amaravati, with only a skeleton staff remaining behind in Hyderabad.[12] From April 2016, the office of the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh has operated from Velagapudi. The Andhra Pradesh Legislature remained in Hyderabad until March 2017, when it relocated to newly constructed interim legislative buildings in Velagapudi.[13]

Etymology[edit]

The name "Amaravati" derives from the historical Amaravathi village, the ancient capital of the Satavahana dynasty.[14] The metropolitan areas of Guntur, Vijayawada and Tenali are the major conurbations of Amaravati.[15]

Amaravati translates literally as 'the place for immortals'. It was formerly named after Dhanyakataka, the location where Shakyamuni Buddha taught the Heart Essence form of the Kalachakra Dharma to the Shambala kings.[citation needed]

History[edit]

Southern India, Andhra Pradesh, Amaravati, Satavahana Period - Veneration of the Buddha as a Fiery Piller - 1943.72 - Cleveland Museum of Art
Southern India, Andhra Pradesh, Amaravati, Satavahana Period - Veneration of the Buddha as a Fiery Piller - 100 BC - c. AD 200 - Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio, United States

The present capital area has its historical significance of having recorded its first-ever legislation 2,200 years ago.[16] The present-day capital region includes the ancient Amaravati. The area has been ruled by the Mauryas, Satavahanas, Ikshvakus, Vishnukundina, Pallavas, Cholas, Kakatiyas, Delhi Sultanate, Musunuri Nayaks, Bahmani Sultanate, Vijayanagara Empire, Sultanate of Golconda and Mughal Empire successively before the founding of the Nizam of Hyderabad in 1724. It was ceded to France in 1750 but was captured by the British in 1759. Guntur returned to the Nizamate in 1768 but was ceded to Britain again in 1788. It was briefly occupied by Hyder Ali. It was then ruled by Vasireddy Venkatadri Nayudu. It was part of Madras Presidency during the British colonial period.

As per the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014, Hyderabad became the capital of the then newly formed state of Telangana, post bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. However, Hyderabad would remain as the joint capital of both states for a period not exceeding ten years. Hence, Amaravati is being built to serve as the capital of Andhra Pradesh.[17]

The foundation for the city was laid at Uddandarayunipalem on 22 October 2015. The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi; the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Nara Chandrababu Naidu; the Vice President of India and the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha Muppavarapu Venkaiah Naidu; then Governor E. S. L. Narasimhan; the Japanese minister for economy trade and industry, Yosuke Takagi; and the Singaporean Minister for Trade and Industry, S. Iswaran, laid the foundation for the city.[10][18]

Geography[edit]

The city is being built in Guntur district, on the banks of the Krishna River. The city will be 40 kilometres (25 mi) south-west of Vijayawada, 32 kilometres (20 mi) north of Guntur, 70 kilometres (43 mi) south-east of Tenali surrounding the Coromandel Coast of Coastal Andhra region in Andhra Pradesh, India.[19]

Vision[edit]

Amaravati 3D Sketch Map at APCRDA Office.

The 13th Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh N. Chandrababu Naidu envisioned Amaravati to be the people-centric pioneer Smart City of India, built around sustainability and livability principles, and to be the happiest city in the world.[20] Among the innovative features on the drawing board are navigation canals[21] around the city, and connecting to an island in the Krishna River. The Government has envisaged an investment needed[22] of US$2–4 billion for the development of the city.[23]

The city is being designed to have 51% green space and 10% of water bodies, with a plan to house some of the most iconic buildings there. It is being modeled on Singapore, with the master plan being prepared by two Singapore government-appointed consultants. Other international consultants and architects will then be brought in to give the city an international flavor.[24]

City Planning[edit]

3D Model of Amaravati in APCRDA office,
Model view of Amaravati in APCRDA office
Model view of Amaravati in APCRDA office

The Andhra Pradesh State Cabinet meeting passed a resolution of 1 September, 2014 to locate the Capital City in a central place of the state, around Vijayawada, and to go for decentralized development of the state with 3 Mega Cities and 14 Smart Cities. The State Government identified the Capital City area between Vijayawada and Guntur cities on the Southern bank of River Krishna upstream of Prakasam Barrage. The Amaravati Capital City has an area of 217.23 sq.km and is spread across 25 villages in 3 mandals (Thulluru, Mangalagiri and Tadepalli) of Guntur district. The 25 villages in the Capital City area have about 1 lakh population in about 27,000 households. The nearest cities are Vijayawada at a distance of 30 km and Guntur at a distance of 18 km. The nearest railway station is KC Canal railway station near Tadepalli and the nearest airport is Gannavaram which is at a distance of 22 km. The city is planned to spread over 217 km2 area with a total cost of ₹ 553.43 billions to the Capital Region Development Authority (CRDA) out of which state government contribution is only ₹ 126 billion (equity ₹ 66.29 billion and supporting grant ₹ 59.71 billion) spread over a period of 8 years from April 2018 to March 2026 (₹ 5 billion in 2018-19, ₹ 18 billion per year for later six years and ₹ 13 billion in 2025-26).[25]

Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA)
City area details: Land utilization
Roads, public utilities, parks, natural streams, water bodies 27,885 acres
Plots for residential area allotted to the Land contributors(Farmers) 11,826 acres
For the needs of other developments presently owned by the CRDA 14,037 acres
Total area under the jurisdiction of CRDA 53,748 acres
Amaravati City Land Usage
Land use Area (Sq. Km) %
Residential 60.77 27.9
Commercial 20.99 9.34
Public and Semi Public 11.49 5.29
Open spaces and Recreation 52.78 24.29
Industrial 12.26 5.64
Water Bodies 25.78 11.87
Traffic and Transportation 23.04 10.61
Cultural Heritage 0.15 0.07
Seed Capital 10.67 4.91
Total 217.23 100

The contribution from the government is to be repaid by the CRDA after the year 2037. Ultimately state or union governments are not incurring any expenditure to construct the city but wholly financed by the income accrued from the sale of land for various development schemes (₹ 171.51 billion), loans and the local taxes (₹ 146.41 billion by 2037) to the CRDA. The state and union governments are expected to earn ₹ 120 billion per annum out of which state goods and services tax (State GST) alone is ₹ 60 billion per annum.[25] The entire city construction is planned by self-financing from loans and land selling with the state government's moral support. CRDA is expecting a net surplus income of ₹ 333 billion by 2037 after meeting the total expenditure on the city. Amaravati government complex which is intended to provide world-class facilities needed for the state government and its employees' accommodation is also part of CRDA project.[26] The bus rapid transit system (BRTS) in Amaravati to connect with the adjacent Vijayawada and Guntur cities by world-class road network is also part of the CRDA project.[27] Both Amaravati government complex and BRTS are planned with an expenditure of ₹ 140 billion.[25]

Project Status[edit]

Permanent Secretariat Tower 5 under construction in Amaravati
Permanent Secretariat Tower 5 under construction in Amaravati April 2019
Amaravati Secretariat in Velagapudi
Amaravati Secretariat in Velagapudi
Raft foundation works of Andhra Pradesh secretariat in Amaravati
Raft foundation works of Andhra Pradesh secretariat in Amaravati
Government complex under construction near Rayapudi
Government complex under construction near Rayapudi
Construction equipment at Government complex in Amaravati (January 2019
Construction equipment at Government complex in Amaravati (January 2019)
NGO housing under construction in Amaravati (March 2019)
NGO housing under construction in Amaravati (March 2019)
Constructions along seed access road
Constructions along seed access road
Year Date Event
2014 2 June 2014 AP Reorganization Act comes into force.
1 September 2014 Location of new Capital City finalized
30 December 2014 APCRDA Act comes into effect and APCRDA established
2015 January 2015 Voluntary Land Pooling Scheme announced
March 2015 Consent for 33,000 acres obtained from farmers
30 March 2015 Submission of Perspective Plan by Singapore Govt
25 May 2015 Submission of Capital City Plan (391sq.Kms) by Singapore Govt
6 June 2015 Amaravati City Bhoomi Puja (Ground-breaking ceremony) by Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu [28][29]
20 July 2015 Submission of Seed Area Development Plan by Singapore Govt
7 August 2015 Workshop with experts on Capital City master plan (3 days)
19 October 2015 Workshop with experts on Capital City master plan
October 2015 Amaravati Greenfield Capital City Development receives Environmental Clearance.
22 October 2015 Foundation stone set by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi[30][31]
27 October 2015 Workshop with stake holders on Capital City Master Plan
26 December 2015 Notification of Draft Detailed Master Plan for Capital City
2016 12 January 2016 to
21 January 2016
Master Plan awareness programme (Grama Sabhas) in each of the 29 villages
23 February 2016 Notification of Detailed Master Plan for Capital City
August 2016 First returnable layout published.
12 October 2016 Andhra Pradesh interim Secretariat construction completed and inaugurated by Chief Minister Naidu in Amaravati[32]
November 2016 20 Returnable layouts published
2017 12 January 2017 Inaugurate New transit Terminal in Gannavaram Airport
19 January 2017 Stakeholders Consultation Workshop on the ‘Environmental & Social Management Framework (ESMF) and Resettlement Policy Framework (RPF)
15 August 2017 Foundation stone for Kings College Hospital by Indo UK Institute of Health[33]
16 August 2017 Police Headquarters building complex constructed on the NH-5 in Mangalagiri[34]
7 September 2017 Foundation stone for Amravati American Institute of Medical Sciences
26 November 2017 Real Time Governance State (RGTS) Center at Secretariat
2018 7 February 2018 Naidu lays foundation stone of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham’s 200-acre campus at Amaravati[35]
22 June 2018 Foundation Stone For NRT Icon Towers In Amaravati
24 July 2018 Foundation stone of mega sports complex in Vijayawada for Project Gandiva
31 July 2018 Naidu inaugurates mobile ATMs in Amaravati [36]
4 December 2018
First International Air Services started from Gannavaram Airport to Singapore
27 December 2018 Naidu lays foundation stone for Andhra Pradesh Permanent secretariat towers[37][38]
2019 12 January 2019 Foundation Stone For Iconic Bridge From Amaravati To Vijayawada[39]
17 January 2019 Foundation stone for XLRI in Amaravati
3 February 2019 CJI lays foundation stone for Andhra High Court in Amaravati[40]
14 February 2019 foundation stone for Vykunthapuram Barrage across Krishna river[41]

In 2019, the new state government allocated a budget of only ₹500 crore and immediately stopped all running projects in the middle of construction that was started by the previous Naidu government.[42][43] The Amaravati project has substantially slowed down with no deadline in sight.[44][45]

Government and politics[edit]

Map showing Amaravati in Andhra Pradesh Capital Region, spread across Guntur and Krishna districts

Administration[edit]

Amaravati is an Urban Notified Area and its urban development and planning activities are undertaken by the Amaravati Development Corporation Limited[46] and Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority (APCRDA).[47] The Andhra Pradesh Secretariat at Velagapudi is the administrative block for the employees of the state government.[48]

The APCRDA has its jurisdiction over the city and is the conurbation covering Andhra Pradesh Capital Region.[49] The capital city is spread over an area of 217.23 km2 (83.87 sq mi),[50] and will comprise villages (including some hamlets) from three mandals viz., Mangalagiri, Thullur and Tadepalle.[51] The seed capital is spread over an area of 16.94 km2 (6.54 sq mi).[52]

The table below lists the identified villages and hamlets under their respective mandals, which became a part of the capital city.[2]

Mandal Settlements
Thullur mandal Abbarajupalem, Ainavolu, Ananthavaram, Borupalem, Dondapadu, Kondarajupalem (de-populated), Lingayapalem (including Modugulankapalem hamlets), Malkapuram, Mandadam (Tallayapalem hamlets), Nekkallu, Nelapadu, Pitchikalapalem, Rayapudi, Sakhamuru, Thulluru, Uddandarayunipalem, Velagapudi, Venkatapalem
Mangalagiri mandal Krishnayapalem, Nidamarru, Kuragallu (including Nerukonda hamlets), Nowlur (including Yerrabalem & Bethapudi hamlets)
Tadepalle mandal Penumaka, Tadepalle (M) (Part) (Nulakapet, Dolas Nagar etc.), Undavalli

Notes:

  • M – municipality
  • The names in brackets are the hamlet villages of the respective settlement.

Language and religion[edit]

The residents of Amaravati are Telugu-speaking people and Telugu is the official language of the city. Hindus form a very large majority, but here are also Muslim, Christian, and Buddhist communities.[53] Religious sites include the Amaralingeswara Swamy Temple, and the Amaravati stupa in the Amaravati heritage complex.[54][55][56]

Economy and infrastructure[edit]

The State government originally initiated the Singapore-based Ascendas-Singbridge and Sembcorp Development consortium for the cities' construction. The city’s infrastructure was to be developed in 7–8 years in phases, at an estimated cost of ₹33,000 crore. ₹7,500 crore from the Housing and Urban Development Corporation Limited (HUDCO), $500 million from the World Bank and ₹2,500 crore from the Indian Government, of which ₹1,500 crore has been granted.[57]

As of July 2019, the World Bank dropped funding for Amaravati.[58] As of September 2019, the Ascendas-Singbridge and Sembcorp Development consortium have also withdrawn from the project.[59] With only state government allocated budget of ₹500 crore in 2019, the Amravati project has substantially slowed down, with no deadline in sight.[44]

Nine themed cities consisting of Finance, Justice, Health, Sports, Media, and Electronics; including Government buildings designed by Norman Foster, Hafeez Contractor, Reliance Group, and NRDC-India will be built within the city.[60][61][62] Pi Data Centre, the fourth largest of its kind in Asia with an investment of 600 crore (US$84 million), and Pi Care Services, a healthcare BPO,[clarification needed] were inaugurated at Mangalagiri IT park.[63][64] HCL Technologies, an IT firm would set up one of its centres in Amaravati.[65][66]

BRS Medicity with an investment of $1.8 billion is to come to Amaravati.[67][68] Mangalagiri Sarees and Fabrics produced in Mangalagiri mandal,[69] a part of the state capital, were registered as one of the geographical indications from Andhra Pradesh.[70]

Education[edit]

Acharya Nagarjuna University
Acharya Nagarjuna University

Colleges and universities

There are public funded universities within the city limits:

Private and autonomous colleges in the city include:

Private institutes like Amrita University, Amity University and the Indo-UK Institute of Health (IUIH) in collaboration with the King's College London, are among others to set up campus in Amaravati.[71][72][73][74] In 2018 the cities' first management institute, Xavier School of Management (XLRI), was under construction near Ainavolu.[75]

Tourist Spots[edit]

Night view of Prakasam Barrage
Night view of Prakasam Barrage

Located on the banks of the Krishna River and between natural getaways and places of heritage, the city has several tourist attractions:

Transport[edit]

APSRTC Amaravati bus
APSRTC Amaravati Bus

The buses operated by Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) from Pandit Nehru Bus Station and NTR bus station, Tenali bus station connects the city with Vijayawada and Tenali, Guntur respectively.

The government however is to explore other means of mass transport like ‘mono rail’, Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) and tramways.[76][77] Two new depots, North and South of the APSRTC are proposed to be constructed.[78] Auto rickshaws also operate for shorter distances in the capital city area.[79]

Roadways[edit]

The Amaravati–Anantapur Expressway, supported by Kurnool and Kadapa Feeder Roads is an ongoing greenfield expressway project, which would provide faster road access from the districts of Anantapur, Guntur, Kadapa, Kurnool and Prakasam to Amaravati, Rajamahendravaram, Kakinada, Visakhapatnam.[80][81] The Amaravati seed capital road is an arterial road under construction to access the core capital area from National Highway 16.[82] The Vijayawada-Amaravati road connects the city with Vijayawada.[83]

Railways[edit]

A proposed Amaravati highspeed circular railway line would connect the city with the nearby cities of Vijayawada, Guntur and Tenali,[84] extending up to a length of 105 km (65 mi) with an estimated cost of 10,000 crore (US$1.4 billion).And a metro rail project is proposed between the cities of Tenali, Guntur, Vijayawada of 100km circular corridor. [85]

Sports[edit]

ACA International Cricket Stadium[edit]

ACA cricket stadium at Mangalagiri (April 2019)
ACA cricket stadium yat Mangalagiri (April 2019)

ACA International Cricket Stadium (also known as the Andhra Cricket Association International Cricket Stadium) is a stadium under construction at Mangalagiri in Amaravati. It is situated in Guntur district and will be spread over 24 acres. The stadium will be owned by Andhra Cricket Association and has a seating capacity of 40,000.[86][87]

Amaravati International Sports Complex[edit]

The complex has been under construction at Vidyadharapuram on 8.9 acres (3.6 ha) of land. It consists of two swimming pools of 50×20 metres, and 20×20 metres, an outdoor synthetic track, multipurpose indoor hall, and a Ground+2 clubhouse where this complex will be the new headquaters for the Sports Authority of Andhra Pradesh (SAAP).[88]

Events[edit]

First National Women’s Parliament in Amaravati[edit]

Buddhist spiritual leader the Dalai Lama participated in the First National Women’s Parliament in Amaravati on 10 February 2017, as he said making Amaravati, the capital of new Andhra Pradesh is a welcome move and I wish it develops well on all fronts. This heritage city has undergone a lot of change over the years where the "economy would flourish where there is peace".[89][90]

Happy Cities Summit[edit]

The Happy Cities Summit Amaravati 2019 backed by APCRDA aims to build on the success and momentum of the inaugural summit to establish Amaravati at the forefront of the discourse on urban innovation with a focus on citizen happiness.[91] The Government of Andhra Pradesh has also successfully hosted the inaugural Happy Cities Summit in Amaravati in April 2018. The summit saw the participation of 1,500+ delegates from 15+ countries, including eminent city leaders and urban experts.[92]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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