Birmingham wins national grant for its ‘Smart Cities’ initiatives

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via the thetechadvocate.com

Birmingham won a Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge Grant!

Birmingham, Alabama, It's Nice To Have You

Along with four other cities, Birmingham was recognized for using digital technology to enhance sustainable city living and working conditions.

Via Smart City Silvassa

The Smart Cities Council, a national technology coalition, recently announced winners of its 2018 Readiness Challenge Grants. The grant recipients are: Birmingham, AL; Cary, NC; Las Vegas, NV; Louisville/Jefferson County, KY; and the Commonwealth of Virginia.

What do we have in common with the other winners?

The five winners had three important things in common,” said Smart Cities Council Chairman, Jesse Berst, “including a focus on uncovering synergies and cost-efficiencies between departments.

“They also fostered coordinated collaboration between internal departments, external stakeholders and nearby regions. Finally, they exhibited a determination to include underserved and vulnerable populations.”

A Smart City?

A smart city is a concept that includes digital transformations in urban areas. While the concept has been around for awhile, it’s a way of designing infrastructure with city services like mass transportation, lighting and landscaping, Wi-Fi and more.

Birmingham, Alabama, Smart Cities

Smart Cities recognized Birmingham for these city-wide goals: social equity, economic competitiveness and environmental sustainability.

Birmingham, Alabama, Smart Cities

Smart Projects In Motion

A few examples of Birmingham’s efforts:

  • The city recently implemented a database to help municipal departments work together to share infrastructure, costs and data.
  • Oh, and there’s also the city’s new online open-government portal for citizens.
forecast
Via TechBirmingham
What Did We Win?

The winning cities will receive mentoring as well as products and services to accelerate their smart city initiatives, along with a readiness workshop tailored to community needs and priorities.

Smart Cities + Birmingham

The Smart Cities Council will take the information it receives from each workshop and develop a shareable “Readiness Roadmap” that provides guidance for the community’s smart city program implementation.

They will also receive free products and services from leading organizations and Smart iris’s Council partners including Qualcomm, Battelle, SYNEXXUS, CompTIA, and IES.

Birmingham will use the Smart Cities Council guidance for projects like the bus rapid transit system, community Wi-Fi, more open data and smart street lighting.

“Birmingham is committed to having sustainable and inclusive growth, and the Smart Cities designation will enable us to put that flag in the ground,” said Mayor Randall Woodfin in a statement.

Birmingham, Alabama, buses, bus, rapid transit, city council
Planning for Birmingham’s Bus Rapid Transit. Via City of Birmingham, Strada