By Jesse Berst, Smart Cities Council
Breaking down the departmental silos is a key challenge in developing a smarter city. Each of the five cities that we’ve selected for our first-ever Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge Grants has made great strides in doing that.
Below, you’ll learn more about our five winning cities — Austin, Indianapolis, Miami, Orlando and Philadelphia — but the important thing to keep in mind is that any transformation begins with bringing everyone in your city together, working toward a common vision.
We’ll be working hands-on with each of our five winning cities this year, helping them take the next steps to improving the livability, workability, Several of our partners are also supporting this effort by contributing technology and services.and resilience of their communities.
But this effort isn’t just about our five winning cities. We’ll be sharing the results of our work with you as we go to help you shape your own smart cities initiatives. I want to personally invite you to attend Smart Cities Week Silicon Valley in Santa Clara, CA, May 8-10, where you’ll be able to hear first-hand from these leading cities. And from many other cities that have learned ways to use smart technologies to boost innovation, inclusion and investment.
And now, learn about our first Readiness Challenge Grant winners and the projects they are working on:
Austin will use its Readiness Workshop to design strategies and solutions for affordable
Indianapolis and Marion County will strengthen emerging initiatives in smart utilities and transportation. After a large delegation attended Smart Cities Week in 2016, Indianapolis formed a working group of ecosystem partners to assess smart city capabilities and guide a long-term vision that integrates with the city’s future planning. Marion County recently approved development of the first electric bus rapid transit (e-BRT) system in the country and is also moving forward with 16 Tech – a comprehensive IoT hub that will pioneer citywide digital infrastructure. “Indianapolis' culture of innovation and rapidly expanding tech industry provide strategic advantages to our smart city planning, specifically in the areas of
Miami will demonstrate the value of smart technologies to enhance urban resilience. As a coastal city with strong geographical growth constraints, Miami is already experiencing the effects of climate change, including frequent tidal floods. The city is planning a Sea-Level Rise Pilot Program that will use
Orlando and Orange County will receive help to develop a comprehensive smart city plan that fully integrates multiple city departments and regional stakeholders. As a global tourist destination, Orlando hopes to showcase a range of smart transportation solutions that can enhance the visitor experience while improving safety and reducing congestion. The city is also working to integrate sensors and advanced communications systems into its
Philadelphia will get help facilitating collaboration and building a regional smart cities ecosystem. The process of applying for the grant has already helped to bring city departments together, causing them to realize they were working on individual solutions to common problems. “Philadelphia, both in the public and private sectors, is dedicated to evolving into a smart city and we are honored that the Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge Grant recognizes our goals,” said Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. “We have been building a coalition of city, community, business and educational institutions. They are all enthused and ready to help with smart city projects focused on the built environment, telecommunications and basic public services like water. We know the technology behind us is important for our citizens and businesses alike, and the expertise that the Smart Cities Council brings will help us realize those opportunities.”
Jesse Berst is chairman of the Smart Cities Council, a global coalition of smart cities leaders working to make cities more livable, workable and sustainable. Register for the Council’s Smart Cities Week Silicon Valley, May 8-10, in Santa Clara, CA.