In 2013, Glasgow beat a host of other UK cities to win funding worth £24m from the Technology Strategy Board (now known as Innovate UK) to explore innovative ways to use technology and data to make life in the city safer, smarter and more sustainable.
Cities and their citizens generate a huge amount of data, which if used smartly can achieve great things. Stepping boldly into the future, Glasgow joins a network of Future Cities around the world in unlocking the potential of open data.
Glasgow has unlocked hundreds of data sources and opened up access to allow smart people to do smart things. The city has been involving and empowering communities, bringing people together to explore their vision for the city and inspiring future generations to make a difference.
Below are but a few solutions that Glasgow has implemented, showing it to be a smarter, more efficient and sustainable city of the future.
As Scotland’s largest local authority, Glasgow City Council has a significant requirement for a modern, efficient fleet of buses to transport children that need additional support, adults with learning disabilities and people attending residential or day care services across the city.
This free transport service meets varied travel needs but traditionally, it used a manual scheduling and routing system with limited flexibility. The council’s bus fleet had to be updated to become more dynamic, efficient and responsive.
New demand-responsive technology has improved journey planning and scheduling, driver and management information and optimisation of routes. The Future City Glasgow programme has introduced industry standard smart phone devices for use by bus drivers.
The drivers were involved in the evaluation and selection of the hand held smart phone style devices to suit their needs. This direct feedback resulted in the selection of devices which can be taken out in the rain and contained built-in torches to aid drivers with vehicle checks in dark weather.
Glasgow has provided a range of online interactive maps (depicting everything from sustainability to support groups and services) that allow users to select data on different aspects of city life and allow them to look for patterns and correlations between different services or simply find out more about their community.
Intelligent Street Lighting in Glasgow
Streetlights are a vital part of every city, providing citizens and business with safety and security. But what if we could use our street lighting network in a more intelligent way rather than the simple on-off system that currently exists.
Through its Future Cities demonstrator, Glasgow is leading the way with the trial of intelligent street lighting, looking at ways to add more control and efficiency to its lighting network while harnessing the power of real time data to improve both lighting and safety throughout the city.