100 smart cities coming up; here's how to be a town planner

  • HT Education Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Aug 07, 2015 15:53 IST

Town planning involves ­conducting feasibility ­studies, planning and designing for a range of projects, ­including ­development plans of ­cities, ­master plans of special economic zones, industrial estates, commercial and ­residential projects, ­formulation of projects, financial ­analysis, consulting with various ­stakeholders, research and design for planning policies to guide development, designing layouts and drafting design ­statements, infrastructure planning, coordination, client interaction, report writing and presentation etc.

A town planner is trained to prepare town plans or Master Plans (statutory documents which give the broad ­direction for the ­spatial growth of a city). Town planners also play a role there in terms of ­validating land uses, approving land ­subdivisions, projects, etc.

In terms of education there are many fields one can ­pursue in order to become a town ­planner. These include ­architecture, civil ­engineering, economics, ­geography, among others. One can also pursue a bachelors of planning after Class 12. One has to have math and science as subjects to enter at the undergraduate level.

There are just over a dozen schools of ­planning in the ­country. Every ­institute has its own entrance test that ­aspirants need to clear.

Many engineers and ­architects directly take up the ­postgraduate ­planning course without studying the undergraduate ­planning course.

Job opportunities for town planners exist mostly in the private sector.

There are a good number of consultancy companies employing town planners.A small number do join the government or get into teaching and research. For most fresh graduates, salaries start at Rs. 5 lakh per annum.

Town planning requires a broad understanding of several subjects such as engineering, architecture, geography, public administration, economics, sociology, etc.
Computer skills are a basic prerequisite. A thorough understanding of civil society and economy is also important.

Driven by performance
Go in for town planning if you are keen to improve your community’s living conditions

Rs. I take home
Rs. 5 lakh per annum

I love my job because...
Town planners have a key role to play when it comes to giving sanctions to proposals put up by realty developers

Expert gyan
While there are 5,161 towns and cities in the country, only a few ­hundred of them have plans prepared. Also, with 100 smart cities being planned across the country, the demand for town planners will be huge

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