As the Indian capital, New Delhi, has grown in recent decades, surrounding states have sprouted urban offshoots speckled with gated high-rise apartment complexes, glitzy office buildings, and fancy malls.
The most well-known example is Gurgaon, or as it likes to call itself, the “Millennium City”—a suburb often positioned as the future of urban India. It’s a metropolis created by private developers where companies, not local governments, serve the municipal needs of the residents. As people spilled out of Delhi in the early 2000s into Gurgaon, developers scrambled to build high-rise buildings to house them. But outside these structures, hardly any civic infrastructure was planned.