As their homes and devices continue to get smarter and more connected, people expect the same from their communities. Recent studies show that 60 percent of Americans are interested in their city or town becoming “smart.” A smart city is not easy for municipal leadership to accomplish without the right technology partnerships. Here’s the top smart city tech local leaders can introduce.
Smart Lighting Controls
The installation of smart lighting controllers gives cities visibility into their lighting infrastructure that they previously did not have. This new visibility can help find ways to lower energy consumption, maintenance and operational costs while enhancing infrastructure management and streamlining workflow automation. In Henderson, IoT-powered sensors monitor and show energy usage through a single user interface, so municipal leaders can make actionable, data-driven decisions on resource management. They can also allow the city to set diming schedules and provide a base for additional IoT devices.
Curbside Management and Parking Solutions
As rideshare and food delivery services increase the activity at the curb, cities are seeking solutions to help automate, manage and monetize their valuable curb space.
In Las Vegas, alleviating downtown congestion is critical to resident and visitor experiences and driving down city emissions. To streamline curbside pick-up, like rideshares and taxis, digital kiosks were launched in 2021 that utilize video analytics and smart parking technology to better manage active curb loading zones for taxis and rideshares, making conditions safer for visitors and pedestrians and more eco-friendly.
Advanced Video Analytics
Cities across the U.S. are increasing their use of Computer Vision solutions. Parks and Recreation departments, for example, are using AI and advanced video analytics to better monitor facility usage and condition.
Recently, Cox launched a pilot program with the city of Las Vegas to deploy one of the first Managed Private Networks (MPN) launched by a U.S. city to facilitate Smart City use cases. Together, Cox and the city leveraged wireless 60ghz technology to power Smart City solutions that deliver insights into visitor attendance and after-hours activities at Baker Park.
This “Smart Park” now captures data on parking lot usage, occupancy, and provides real-time event notifications from Computer Vision enabled cameras, driving enhanced visibility and public safety. By leveraging this data, the city can strategically send patrols to the park only when needed, improving operations.
The data the Computer Vision camera systems capture can drive community benefits beyond public safety too. For example, a camera at a downtown intersection can capture information about visitor volumes and direction in order to improve traffic flow. This data can also be used by individual city departments, like Economic Development as business case materials to encourage new business growth, or Public Works to determine energy usage and operational profitability.
The Future of Smart Cities
According to past research commissioned by Cox, citizens living in the markets Cox serves think energy efficiency, traffic management and emergency services in their communities can benefit most from smart technology. In fact, nearly 60 percent said they would pay more in taxes if their local government deployed technology solutions that improved quality of life.
Local leaders can deliver on what their constituents want – more modernized communities – by prioritizing technology that can make a big impact and attract the talent the city requires for positive community growth. A data driven city improves decision-making and creates a smarter city for us all.
The author, Stephen Rusche is Senior Director of Smart Communities at Cox Communications.