Center of Innovation, Technological Advancement, Resilience
The smart city strategy, the first ever, will be launched by Orlando, Florida. The goal is to “guide (its) efforts to be a center of innovation, technological advancement, and resilience.”
Future-Ready City Plan
Presented via a virtual meeting room, the Future-Ready City Plan has been presented. Furthermore, additional feedback from city residents will be given to the City Council for approval next month.
In addition, the agenda consists of measures to close the digital divide ensuring resilience for all citizens. This prepares the way for future mobility systems.
The city of Orlando runs several smart city initiatives. In 2017, it was an autonomous vehicle (AV) proving ground by the US Department of Transportation. In addition, they have an open data portal. Also, the city has a “digital city hall” to improve the efficiency of services for citizens. The plan is targeting getting all of its energy from clean sources by 2050.
“We wanted to step back and create a more comprehensive plan as we move forward with some of these innovative approaches,” Michael Hess, Director of Future Ready, City of Orlando, told Cities Today. “We also really wanted to reach out to our community.”
Smart City Foundational Elements
Therefore, the city has partnered with VHB and a group of other local consultants to create a roadmap. The idea is to engage internal stakeholders, the business community, educational partners, utility providers, non-profits, and residents in the process.
However, these “foundational elements” service as a foundation for the plan, including transparency, collaboration, security, resilience, and prosperity for all. In addition, the blueprint is available in seven areas: connectivity, energy, health and safety, materials, mobility, placemaking, and water.
Hess said: “A lot of people hear smart city and they instantly jump to technology. To me, that’s not the right approach. If it’s technology-led, you might end up with a [lot] of technology that your community doesn’t even want. For us, the key thing is, it has to start with community engagement.”