Chandigarh: The City Beautiful | Why and How

Needless to say, nobody can literally dethrone Chandigarh from its title “The City Beautiful”. I’ve completed almost a year living in Chandigarh. I have immersed myself in the serenity of this place. I have marveled at its well-planned development as well as exquisite architecture. I’ve encountered the most gold-hearted people and undoubtedly, in awe of the city’s nightlife. I still wonder how meticulously the “City Beautiful” was crafted around a man-made lake.

All these things about Chandigarh enraptured me to such an extent that I never considered how the title of “The City Beautiful” was bestowed on Chandigarh. Now that I know, I am going to tell you how this beautiful union territory and capital of the 2 big states- Haryana & Punjab; got its name

Also, I will give you 5 reasons why Chandigarh is one of the best cities in India when it comes to getting a job, settling here and have a great quality of life.

How Chandigarh got its title “The City Beautiful”

The title of “The City Beautiful” was derived from the City Beautiful movement that was a popular philosophy in North American urban planning during the 1890s and 1900s. American Architect Albert Mayer, the initial planner of Chandigarh, deplored the American rejection of City Beautiful concepts and declared “We want to create a beautiful city.” The phrase “Beautiful City” was used on as a logo in official publications in the 1970s, and is now how the city describes itself. See more about the history.

Chandigarh was the dream city of India’s first Prime Minister, Jawahar Lal Nehru. After the 1947 partition, the former British province of Punjab was split between Sikhs of East Punjab in India and Muslims West Punjab in Pakistan. The Indian Punjab needed a new capital city for replacing Lahore, which became part of Pakistan during the partition.

Fortunately, Albert Mayer was assigned to design a new city called “Chandigarh” in 1949. The government carved out Chandigarh of nearly 50 Pwadhi speaking villages of the then state of East Punjab, India. Until then, Shimla was the temporary capital of East Punjab until Chandigarh was completed in 1960. Thus, the connection of the Albert Mayer in the making of Chandigarh followed by North American urban planning movement was the reason behind the title “The City Beautiful” . See more about the history of Chandigarh on Wikipedia

Awards and Recognitions

The first planned city of post-independence India has got various awards and recognition in its bucket. Some of the prominent acknowledgments that Chandigarh has received are:

1) Chandigarh has been cited as a perfect city during a story on BBC featured as ‘Is this the perfect city’? The “City Beautiful” was described as one of the remarkable cities. Read the full article on
India Today

2) In 2015, LG Electronics ranked Chandigarh as the happiest city in India over the happiness index

3) Chandigarh is the wealthiest city in India with people having higher purchasing power than an average family in Mumbai.

wealthiest town chandigarh

4) Chandigarh was reported to be the cleanest city in India in 2015

5) Recently, Chandigarh has topped the list in terms of the most planned in city according to the 2017 survey report by Swachh-Survekshan

Why Chandigarh is actually the “City Beautiful”?

What we define as “beautiful” is way different from the way we actually perceive it. Antartica is beautiful but I wouldn’t prefer living there; in fact, nobody would. Banglore offers the best opportunities in the IT sector, but I personally cannot tolerate its traffic where I have to travel for 45-60 minutes to cover 5-6 minutes. Some people would.

I believe for all us Indians, with varied expectations and likings, Chandigarh is “beautifully neutral”. Its a paradise for the Delhite; in the traffic angst. It’s not bad for the Bangalorean either who is nestled in the IT hub and wants something different and something he/she has never seen before, probably no traffic jams. It’s an opportunity for an Himachali to make a fortune in the corporate sector. Food, Nightlife, Jobs; you name it, Chandigarh has all. It’s not about having less or more, it’s about having everything and still having something out of it totally unparalleled which makes Chandigarh distinctive

Thus, Chandigarh is actually the “City Beautiful” in many ways. I have highlighted only a few that is desired by all:

1) IT Hub

Just from being a realm of retired defense personnel, Chandigarh has transfigured itself into a forte of IT professionals. Being the capital of the two states, it has witnessed and still witnessing hordes of big MNC and startups making their way to Chandigarh and neighboring cities; Mohali and Panchkula. There are no dearth of jobs in any field, be it a high position or an entry-level job

2) No traffic panics

Industries are set up outside the city. The city is well planned to never let the situation of nerve-wracking traffic jams pervade in. Unlike other metro cities, you don’t have to halt for 100 seconds or more which seems like eternity when you are in a rush

3) Sector-wise Parks and Gardens

In Chandigarh, you get to see parky in every sector, there are parks in every area. Driving down the road, you will hardly encounter a barren land. Who doesn’t like to be surrounded by nature all the time?

4) Amazing Night Life

You really don’t have suppressed yourself when it comes to going to discotheques in Chandigarh. With good security and 24*7 radar on the places where the likelihood of any unwanted things may happen, Chandigarh is pretty safe for girls comparatively

5) Proximity to major hill stations of India

That’s my favorite. If you want to unwind, not just on the typical weekends but for really a good period of time, then there’s no place like Chandigarh. Proximity to Himachal Pradesh definitely gives the working people a reason to unwind every now and then. I wouldn’t mind taking a 4 day off from office and heading to Manali or kasol:)

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