The good news is that many cities are working to remove barriers to a truly connected smart city. The result is a collaborative approach that leverages IoT to mitigate risk and optimize assets, resulting in improved systems and enhanced quality of life.
Here’s what breaking down the silos could mean in practice: imagine a driver on his or her daily commute. They are stuck in traffic and wondering why. Suddenly, they are alerted by the city of an accident 20 km down the road. They are also given information on alternative routes, which allows them to quickly adjust their plans and make it to work on time.
Now let’s add some more to that picture. By leveraging IoT and related technology, the driver isn’t the only person alerted to that accident. First responders and people working with public safety and public works are also notified, oassengers using public transport are alerted and nearby police officers are quickly re-routed and re-assigned.
Suddenly, through IoT, you have all interested parties mobilized and aware and a potentially difficult situation is brought under control much more quickly. Additionally, data from the incident can be utilized to understand if the place of the accident is one where accidents happen regularly. Data can also be used to measure response times and how systems are working.
Another scenario could involve a big event in your city, such as a sporting event or a concert. By connecting your various systems and departments and sharing information, traffic lights and public transport can be coordinated with event timings to help manage and disperse crowds in a safe and efficient manner. Connected parking spaces can help people easily identify where to park through an app, while an integrated cashless payment system can ease processes.
So, how do you develop a truly cohesive smart city that is responsive and integrated? While the best advice is to integrate your solutions right from the start, that might not be possible, given that many cities already have smart city solutions up and running. No matter what stage your smart city is at, collaboration between the various players across the smart city is pivotal in developing the right suite of smart solutions to meet the unique needs of your city.