Today marks an announcement from the Scottish Cities Alliance of Smart City projects that will be taken forward across the seven cities wth the aim of transforming them into world-leading digital hubs.
Last year, the Alliance launched its Smart Cities Scotland identity with the announcement that it had been allocated up to £10million in European Regional Development Funding (ERDF), which is to be matched with £14million from the cities.
This ground-breaking Smart Cities Scotland programme aims to make services across Scotland’s cities become more efficient and greener while making the cities themselves more attractive to potential investors.
The Scottish Cities Alliance, which is the collaboration of Scotland’s seven cities and the Scottish Government, aims to use Smart City technology to transform cities into digital hubs to enable them to become more internationally competitive and boost economic growth.
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This programme aims to transform everything from street lighting to healthcare and from public safety to controlling energy use to make life smarter using open data.
The “Smart” ambitions of Scotland’s cities are connected to projects the cities believe will help them become some of the most desirable places to live and work and most sustainable locations in the world. Projects that have been given the green light include:
- Smart Infrastructure – Intelligent Street lighting: Aberdeen, Perth, Stirling and Glasgow are piloting Intelligent Street Lighting which will deliver a range of benefits, including more controllable and efficient lighting, delivering energy savings and enhanced public and road safety. This will reduce CO2 emissions by using LED bulbs and sensors to control the lights.
- Smart Services – Waste : Perth, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling will work collaboratively in order to deliver improved waste management services, including deployment of smart bin technology and innovative smart technology deployed in the waste management process to enhance waste and recycling collections through improved monitoring and sharing of data and information. Sensors in bins will alert waste management services to empty the bin only when full, improving efficiency.
- Smart Infrastructure – Innovation Labs: An innovation hub in Perth will develop new businesses in the digital and creative sectors linking to research and education. The Hub aims to foster new businesses and encourage entrepreneurs; but within the facility the Innovation Lab will take this further in terms of developing smart city technologies and solutions.
- Open Data operations: Cities will create data publication platforms with the introduction of data analytics which will allow cities to make evidence based decisions in order to improve services and delivery. This means more informed decisions will be made leading to efficiency
The £10 million ERDF is part of the Smart Growth element of the 2014-20 ERDF programme and will support the ‘Scotland’s 8th City – the Smart City Strategic Intervention’. The ambition is to make a step change in the use of smart technology for integrated city management across the seven cities, not just individually but collectively, so creating the 8th city. The data gathered will be made widely available for others to use: it can be used in the development of new products and services and will create more responsive and appropriate services. To date 10 operations have been approved with £6.7m grant committed with further operations currently being considered.
Glasgow leads on the Smart Cities programme for the Alliance and Scotland’s Smart Cities will use the learning and experience and build on the work of Glasgow’s award-winning Future City Glasgow programme, which created a world-leading Operations Centre catapulting the city to the forefront of Smart Cities technology.
Our success in pioneering smart city technologies is something we will continue to build on to deliver transformed services for residents, businesses and visitors
Councillor Frank McAveety, Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Future City Glasgow, said: “Glasgow, as lead city for this programme in Scotland, worked with our partners across the country both to submit this bid and show how the use of data can benefit us all socially and economically. Our success in pioneering smart city technologies is something we will continue to build on to deliver transformed services for residents, businesses and visitors.”
Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work Keith Brown announced the European Regional Development Funding at the inaugural Smart Cities Scotland launch last year.
He said: “Through the Scottish Cities Alliance we are working to boost Scotland’s cities and make them smarter.
“That’s why I’m pleased to see this programme move into its delivery phase with the wide range of projects announced today set to make our cities more efficient and greener, as well as more attractive to potential investors.
“This £24 million investment will use Smart City technology to transform our cities into world-leading digital hubs which will improve services and empower residents. I look forward to seeing how it can make our cities more internationally competitive and boost economic growth.”
Chair of the Scottish Cities Alliance, Councillor Andrew Burns, said: “We are delighted to announce the projects that will transform Scotland’s cities into Smart Cities, giving them the edge to attract more investment.
“By working together Scotland’s cities are utilising economies of scale to learn individually and share that knowledge collectively, to be at the cutting edge of Smart City technology and the benefits that brings. Our inter-city approach to developing Smart City solutions has been praised publicly by the European Commission and we have attracted the attention of other nations who are looking to emulate our collaborative model.
“By working together the Alliance partners share knowledge and are creating projects of scale that will deliver an economically stronger future for Scotland.”