Broadband Communities

JAN-FEB 2019

BROADBAND COMMUNITIES is the leading source of information on digital and broadband technologies for buildings and communities. Our editorial aims to accelerate the deployment of Fiber-To-The-Home and Fiber-To-The-Premises.

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BROADBAND APPLICATIONS | B R O A D B A N D C O M M U N I T I E S | w w w. b r o a d b a n d c o m m u n i t i e s . c o m | J A N U A R Y / F E B R U A R Y 2 0 1 9 Smart Planning for Smart Cities Before adopting smart-city technologies, communities should make sure they have processes in place to ensure the success of their projects. American Planning Association research identifies best practices in this emerging field. By Kathleen McMahon / Applied Communications T he next time you hear the term "smart city," consider the following: Creating a successful smart city requires understanding complex systems and balancing opposing interests that compete for limited budget resources to invest in technology that may be outdated in a few years. ese challenges may seem insurmountable. If a city can navigate this difficult task, however, it can reap benefits for years to come. e way to accomplish this feat is through smart planning. In 2013, the American Planning Association (APA) created a task force to identify potential benefits and challenges of smart-city technologies. e resulting white paper also explored how technologies could advance other city goals, such as sustainability and equity. e task force report, released in 2015, defined smart cities as follows: "Smart cities use information- communication technology (ICT) to engage citizens, to deliver city services and to enhance and connect urban systems." Figure 1 illustrates the different components of smart cities. To be truly effective, a smart city must be more than just the sum of its parts. It must also include certain attributes that contribute to innovation and to the seamless integration of such technologies into city operations. Key attributes for a network that will enable smart-city applications include interoperability, redundancy, asset optimization and cybersecurity. Attributes that should be incorporated into software applications include transparency, ease of user interfaces, support for real-time decision making and ethical use of big data. In designing either a smart-city network or the applications that will run on it, the ultimate goal should be to provide technologies that will add value to a community, improve services to all citizens and promote sustainability. Since the release of the white paper, the task force has continued the discussion on various smart-city issues as they relate to city planning. It has conducted research, and offered webinars, on autonomous vehicles, big data, broadband, Figure 1: Components of smart cities

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