This is the era of “smart” cities. The cities invest in infrastructure and people are more connected, better-informed and more environment friendly, they are driven toward a future where city governance and urban living will be as connected as the functions on their smartphone.
The cities are the most likely places to create innovative applications through support of information and communication technology (ICT).
According to Gartner, a smart city is an urbanized area where multiple public and private sectors cooperate to achieve sustainable outcomes through the analysis of contextual real-time information.
Gartner estimated that 1.1 billion connected things will be in use by smart cities in 2015 will allow citizens to gain more transparency and awareness about their cities.
There are cities well designed and very rational, that they are taking actions to embrace features that provide greater engagement with citizens; smart parking, smart lighting, energy and waste management,” Los Angeles is the world’s first city to synchronize traffic lights to reduce congestion, and New York City is working on America’s first “quantified community,” which will monitor data like foot traffic, waste production and energy usage in real-time.
by 2030, smart technologies, autonomous vehicles and virtual spaces, will reduce the environmental footprint of cities by 50 percent. (Gartner Research)
Today, apps like Waze and HopStop update commuters about public transit and traffic congestion in real-time, and bike-sharing programs are helping urban dwellers get around with ease. Car sharing, for example, is allowing citizens to play a role in reducing carbon emissions and road traffic, among other benefits.
Juniper Research has revealed the top ranking smart cities globally for 2015, Barcelona, has been named the ‘smartest city’ in the world first of New York, London, Nice and Singapore.
Juniper’s Smart City Rankings have been compiled following an analysis of each city’s ‘smart’ capabilities, with particular focus on their use of smart grids, smart traffic management and smart street lighting, alongside aspects such as technological capability and social cohesion, among others.
From an article by Forbes – Barcelona, also is the city, which won the European Capital of Innovation prize, set up by the European Commission, is packed with sensors and innovative projects. Two of them have been financed by the European Regional Development Fund: the first, “E-JUSTICIA.CAT” allows the Ministry of Justice to connect online with other administrations (police, hospitals, prisons) and lawyers so that citizens are able to receive information or request via a simple online procedure. The second project XALOC, launched in 2010, consists in the development of an ICT platform to detect free parking spaces and locate vehicles.
Barcelona is perhaps the most advanced European example, but many other city are following its trail.
Copenhagen is well-known for its sustainable mobility solutions and has the ambition of becoming the first carbon neutral capital by 2025.
Dublin, is a example to smart city, because got government support to the smart mobility city project, soon to be installed thousands of new digital sensors for monitoring of urban land.
Many IT companies in Dublin, Google, Intel, Amazon, Facebook, LinkedIn, PayPal, Twitter, Zynga, to quote just the most famous (but there are many smaller), prove that Ireland has been able to build a favorable environment for innovation in the digital economy.
In Italy there are 1227 projects by smart city, and a total investment of over 4.5 billion Euros. This is the picture that emerges from the web platform made available by the National ANCI.
This market, worldwide, will be worth $ 400 million in 2024, while only segment “IoT sensors” will reach 70 billion dollars (Research and Markets).
But, smart cities will truly sustainable only if, citizens are equipped with of the tools they need to contribute to civic life, data has to be captured from any functional device and then transferred to a single location. In order to do this in real-time, advanced and reliable telecommunications infrastructure is required.