First, it probably helps to define what we mean when we say “Smart City.” A Smart City brings together technology, government, and citizens to manage population growth, crime rates, investments in infrastructure, and provide a more transparent administration. It includes things like intelligent lighting, surveillance, transportation sensors, intelligent buildings, integrated transportation and much more.
Magenium works with a number of municipalities to help deploy smart city technologies, and one of those cities is Naperville, Illinois – the first city in the state to join the open-government initiative. One area we were able to assist with was helping them manage their backups with Microsoft’s Azure Government Cloud. We also migrated some of their applications to run in the cloud environment, enabling the city to scale applications up and down when needed and ultimately save money in the process.
But that’s just the tip of the iceberg for what Naperville is doing. Recently they’ve launched a Public Safety Incident Map, where crimes ranging from narcotics to arson can be sorted by type and shown to the public in near real-time. Naperville has also placed police cameras throughout the city that record 24 hour hours a day – and if an incident requires review, the footage can be retrieved with ease.
As part of the open-government initiative, Naperville is also linking multiple systems together to be able to easily pull data from accounting, finance, and other departments and post them publicly on their website. This approach enables residents monitor how city officials are spending tax money and make intelligent decisions come election time. It also arms those officials with much-needed information to be more effective at governing.
Has your city considered open data initiatives? Are you looking for guidance on how you can get some early wins? Contact us and we can evaluate your current situation to set you up for success.