Waste to be sucked away in new Indian finance hub

A brand new Indian finance and tech city intended to rival London and Singapore will have the world’s biggest centrally vacuum-powered waste disposal system, say the system’s inventors.

When it’s complete the Gujarat International Finance & Tech City (GIFT City), being developed in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, will generate more that 400 tonnes of waste per day from 600,000 people living and working there.

All that waste will be sucked down chutes and sorted into organic and recyclable streams by Swedish company, Envac.

Each building will have two chutes channeling waste to seven underground collection stations. Envac will sort the waste into organic waste and recyclables

Envac announced today that the first instalment of the system went live on site on 1 April this year.

Two towers, of more than a hundred planned, are now finished.

"This is undoubtedly one of the most exciting projects that we have had the opportunity to work on, not just because of its sheer scale but also because of its diversity and the fact that it’s a world first," said Graham Bell, regional president of Envac Middle East and India.

"Unlike most of our systems, where Envac is responsible for transporting waste from inlets to the collection station, we will be responsible for the entire waste collection process including recyclable segregation."  

Championed by Modi

Billed as the flagship "smart city" in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 100-smart-city plan, GIFT City will feature automated waste collection, water harvesting and centrally controlled heating and cooling.

It will have 112 towers ranging in height from 25 to 60 storeys, residential and commercial zones, hospitals and schools and a world-class trade centre.

Conceived in 2007 as a special economic zone to attract global finance and high-tech firms, it has been championed by Modi, who was formerly chief minister of Gujarat state.

The global financial crisis stalled the project in 2008 but momentum is building again.

Envac says the full system is expected to be worth more than $75m and will be one of the largest automated underground waste systems in the world.

Each building will have two chutes channeling waste to seven underground collection stations. Envac will sort the waste into organic waste and recyclables.

The company said talks are currently underway to include an onsite waste-to-energy plant, which would make it a fully closed-loop waste management system.

"Being a smart city, most of the infrastructure we are developing will add value to the overall development and the automated waste collection system at city level will remove human interaction in the collection and disposal of waste," said Ramakant Jha, GIFT City chief executive.

For more information on GIFT City, visit:

Image: Artist’s render of GIFT City in Gujarat, India (GIFT City)

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