The Sharing Cities ‘lighthouse’ programme is a proving ground for a better, common approach to making smart cities a reality. By fostering international collaboration between industry and cities, the project seeks to develop affordable smart city solutions. It will result in integrated commercial-scale smart city solutions with a high market potential.
The demonstration districts in ‘lighthouse’ cities Lisbon, London and Milan will implement replicable urban digital solutions and collaboration models. The Royal Borough of Greenwich in London, Porta Romana/Vettabbia in Milan and downtown Lisbon will retrofit buildings, introduce shared electric mobility services, and install energy management systems, smart lamp posts and an urban sharing platform through engaging with citizens. ‘Fellow’ cities Bordeaux, Burgas and Warsaw will co-develop, validate, or implement these solutions and models.
The project will serve as a testing ground for new digitally enabled business models, which will prompt cities, industry and citizens to collaborate across cultures and borders. It’ll focus on a number of different work streams: Changing behaviour and attitude to energy consumption through efficiency and conservation measures; Implementing and testing sustainable e-mobility solutions; Reducing emissions of air and water pollutants; And increasing the supply of affordable social housing through new construction and the retrofitting of existing buildings.
By doing so the project aims to achieve its 10 goals :
1 Aggregate demand and deploy smart city solutions
2 Deliver common and replicable innovative models
3 Attract external investment
4 Accelerate take-up of smart city solutions
5 Pilot energy efficient districts
6 Shift thinking irreversibly to local renewable energy sources
7 Promote new models of e-mobility
8 Successfully engage with citizens
9 Exploit ‘city data’ to maximum effect
10 Foster local level innovation, creation of new businesses and jobs
These ambitious plans inevitably raise questions, such as: can the six cities achieve all this in a matter of five years? As always, automatic progression is obviously not a given. But the stage is already set: these six cities are now learning to share – and sharing to learn.