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Previewing the City of Tomorrow

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Written by: Mital Hall

The flying cars, long-lived humans and their and robotic helpers will live in communities that are being planned today.

Among those planners, smart technologies experts from leading companies worldwide now advise and participate in the Smart Cities Council. The council exists to grow smart cities worldwide. It advises on technology, provides policy frameworks and financial tools, and advocates for sustainable communities.

Offering a challenge

Over 130 cities responded to a readiness challenge from the Smart Cities Council. From those, five were awarded consultation on applying smart technologies, achieving innovation, and strategically investing in future urban life. The winners and some of their key initiatives were:

Austin, Texas
  • Affordable housing
  • Outreach to under-served populations
Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Long-term vision
  • Electric busses
Miami, Florida
  • Sea Level Rise Pilot Program
  • Geographic Information System
Orlando, Florida
  • Smart transportation solutions
  • Sensors and communications for public safety
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Meet common challenges of civic, business, and educational institutions
  • Plan a regional infrastructure

All 130 participants in the challenge received Smart Cities Council feedback and guidance.

Orlando looks to the future

As a winning city, Orlando held a Readiness Workshop on June 6th, 2017.

City leaders, staff and key stakeholders met with industry experts from the Smart Cities Council for a full day. Participants learned techniques and technologies for better infrastructure investments. Among the possibilities they explored were interconnected systems capable of gathering real-time intelligence.

Later in the workshop, participants focused on specific topics within working groups:

  • Affordable housing
  • the Built environment (public buildings, spaces, and parks)
  • Digital inclusion
  • Energy
  • Open data (data sharing and connectivity)
  • Public safety
  • Transportation
  • Water

The working groups shared key concepts to form a smart cities roadmap. That roadmap begins with short-term wins, continues with medium-term projects, then encompasses longer-term goals. The complete roadmap will be further assessed by Orlando’s smart cities leadership team. It will become a resource in planning the city of tomorrow.


Mital Hall

Vice President

At ecoPreserve, Mital leads all sustainability projects and Smart Cities initiatives. Her skillset is the result of more than 15 years of sustainable development experience that includes work with universities, local/state/federal governments, and businesses.