Ahmedabad-Dholera expressway project, 5000MW Solar Power Park will make Dholera an investment hub for a host of sectors

The development is a huge shot in the arm for the DSIR project which is one of India’s first and largest Greenfield Smart city that aims to provide superlative infrastructure and sustainable environment through the application of ‘smart’ solutions.

As India slowly started opening up a host of sectors in its unlock phase, a significant development in Gujarat has come across as positive news offering a major boost to business and employment opportunities. The National Highway Authority of India recently initiated development work of the Ahmedabad-Dholera four-lane expressway project. The work order of Rs 3,500 crore for the stretch of road connecting Ahmedabad to Dholera Special Investment Region (SIR) has been finalised and work is expected to begin shortly. This road will be a new straight alignment.

The Ahmedabad-Dholera expressway will have more advanced features than the Ahmedabad-Vadodara expressway and is expected to reduce the commute between Ahmedabad and Dholera to less than an hour.

The development is a huge shot in the arm for the DSIR project which is one of India’s first and largest Greenfield Smart city that aims to provide superlative infrastructure and sustainable environment through the application of ‘smart’ solutions.

Speaking about the Ahmedabad-Dholera expressway, Dr. Parul Mansata, Dy. Collector, Dholera SIR Regional Development Authority said, “The Ahmedabad-Dholera expressway has many more cutting-edge features as compared to other highway projects. This project will prove to be a boon for the development in the region since it will reduce the commute between Ahmedabad and Dholera to less than an hour. It is slated to usher in a host of opportunities to the DSIR region in terms of business, employment and growth.”

In addition to the highway, Dholera is also all set to develop one of the world’s largest single-location Ultra Mega Solar Power Park which the government approved recently. Close to 11,000 hectares of land parcels are dedicated to the Park with estimated capacity of 5000 MW renewable energy generation. Of this, currently Phase 1 of 1000 MW is being developed in which a 700 MW bid was recently awarded to five companies in August 2020 namely Vena Energy Renewables, Tata Power, ReNew Power, SJVN Limited, and TEQ Green Power while 300 MW from the bid issued in the year 2019 was awarded to Tata Power. 

Such mega connectivity and city building projects are bound to transform the region into a vibrant commercial corridor and urban areas. The highway and the power project together will prove to be focal points to attract major investments to the region. With its robust infrastructure, Dholera has already become a key location for massive business as well as urban development and is slated to become a model for smart cities. 

 “The Ultra Mega Solar Power Park in Dholera is a state-of-the-art project that will be crucial in developing clean, renewable energy. Solar power is key to achieving the sustainable development goals for DSIR. With the bid awarded to five companies, work is on to devise an innovative approach to attracting investors to the region that will thrive on renewable energy” said Dr. Parul Mansata.

DSIR is inviting large manufacturers from various sectors like aviation, defence, electronics, pharmaceuticals, textiles, heavy engineering etc. to set up shop. Along with smart solutions, the project also envisages generating huge employment opportunities in the region. For cost conscious companies with sustainable goals, Dholera will prove to be an effective business destination since it can provide ease of business and the best of urban life for employees and their families. The first few companies that are exploring business proposals have been offered lowest power tariffs and other incentives. Also, as per the new Industrial policy announced by the Gujarat Government recently, companies that wish to set up business in the Category 1 talukas (as specified by the State), are slated to receive the maximum number of incentives and benefits and Dholera falls in Category 1. As per the policy, these companies will receive capital subsidy at 25 % of the eligible Term Loan (amount subject to a maximum amount of Rs. 35 lakhs) and interest subsidy at 7% of term loan amount disbursed (with the maximum amount of Rs. 35 lakhs per annum for 7 years) among other incentives.  

By the time it is entirely complete in 2040, Dholera has a vision to cater to a population of 2 million and an employment base of over 8,27,000. While the industrial area of DSIR is envisaged with sterling facilities, it is also to be complemented by residential development to meet an anticipated population of 2 million by 2040. 

Some of the outstanding features of Dholera are that it is industry 4.0 ready, focusing on newer technologies. The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Dholera is designed to be a focal point for growth drivers in several key ICT areas including M2M/IoT, Connected Devices, Broadband Wireless, Cloud Computing, Big Data and Analytics. Dholera Industrial City will host many technologies and solutions with an integrated platform and command control center which will include all city applications like e-Governance, e-Health, e-Education, Safety and Security. There will be foremost focus on using futuristic technologies like Big Data, Analytics, IoT, Block chain and Artificial Intelligence (AI) with real time monitoring and controlling. Dholera’s planned ICT technologies, especially AI-enhanced urban transportation, smart grids, renewable energy, waste and water management and urban farming will not only reduce CO2 emissions, but will also improve energy, water and food security and effectively address climate change and environmental issues. 

Features like these also facilitate companies who intend to setup some of the biggest Data Centres in India and this makes Dholera, the right place for establishment. Characteristics like Lowest Power Tariff, 5000 MW Solar Park, ICT enabled networking etc will make industries in the Data Centre sector more competitive allowing them to get better returns on investment well in advance according to their forecast.

Speaking about DSIR as an attractive business destination, Dilip Brahmbhatt, General Manager - Commercial said, “DSIR is strategically located and is at the crossroads of commerce that puts businesses, people and goods on the path to economic renaissance. 

Situated between the main industrial centres of Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Surat, Rajkot and Bhavnagar, the site will have sterling connectivity. Along with the Expressway and Solar Park, the project also envisages Ahmedabad-Dholera Metro Rail Connectivity, Logistics Parks and Mega Industrial Parks across DMIC development in the state. With its world-class infrastructure, DSIR can be a superlative choice for national as well as global companies looking to expand in the Indian market’’. In DSIR, corporations will benefit from top-notch digital infrastructure, reliable, low-cost energy, abundant water; and natural resources which will help them grow and undertake operations seamlessly”added Dilip Brahmbhatt

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