Wise Up or Fall Down: Smart Technology and the Citizen Journey

By Galaxia Martin, Solutions Director

Intelligently implemented smart technology makes cities more efficient, mitigates growing pains, and improves the ongoing experience—or journey—of its citizens. Smart cities can predict and scale for population growth to minimize impact on the public safety, housing, and hospitality sectors. Smart technology can also improve the citizen journey by reducing waste, lowering cost, and enhancing the natural beauty.  Energy-efficient buildings, air quality sensors, and renewable energy sources help smart cities reduce waste and conserve resources.

Keeping up with technology and trends makes smart cities more attractive places to live and work than their luddite counterparts. Leveraging technology to advance private/public partnerships helps reduce crime, which can improve public image.

Smart technology also promotes connection by making services and information readily accessible. After all, no one enjoys searching through a counterintuitive series of websites/pages to learn about the latest changes around town or pay a parking ticket.

Smart Technology includes:

  • Automated video surveillance
  • Body/street cameras
  • License plate recognition
  • Gunshot detection
  • Connected crime prevention and response centers
  • Next-generation 911
  • Water supply monitoring and contamination screening
  • Online payment portals for municipal services, fines, and taxes
  • Mobile access to public transit schedules
  • Real-time vehicle tracking
  • Public Wi-Fi hotspots

Why it helps:

  • Municipal water supply management: Quickly identifying leaks in pipes to fix damaged segments faster and reduce the amount of water lost
  • Energy Optimization: Monitoring peak times of electricity usage and outages
  • Roadway Congestion Relief: Intelligent traffic signals optimizing traffic flow during peak travel times, improving highway, road, and bridge safety
  • Predicting and warning of poor air quality

SDI Presence has helped numerous clients implement smart solutions. We worked closely on utility solutions and surveillance systems among other things. With our skilled teams in various industries, SDI Presence can help your organization leverage smart solutions and build a strategy.

How to get started:

  1. Conduct an assessment to better understand your current technology’s challenges and gaps.
  2. Find out what would make your city a better place. Understand your citizens.
    1. What concerns or challenges do they face – Finding out what would make your city a better place is a critical step to draw more attraction to your city.
  3. Gather a list of concepts or ideas from your internal workforce.
    1. IT Teams, Business Teams, and Partners – Your internal teams can help tremendously with the challenges they have as well as their view on what the citizens struggle with
  4. Create a vision on what type of smart city you want to become.
    1. Your approach should be planned year by year and revised as technology changes. You do not want to be the best smart city today and not a year from now. Keeping up with the technology trends is critical.
  5. Create a Strategy to begin planning and implementing aspects of your goals.
    1. A phased approach is the best method. Revisit each target and goal to make sure it has not changed. Measuring your success after each improvement is important to track the impact and metrics for your city.

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