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The Dallas "LivingLab" smart city approach: bringing everyone together

Submitted by doug.peeples on March 31, 2017

Through its Living Lab platform, Council Lead Partner AT&T, the city's Dallas Innovation Alliance, additional tech companies such as Lead Partner Current, powered by GE, academic institutions and the community are working together on three simultaneous smart city projects. The details are in the news release below, but one very important point is that the Living Lab pilot will assess and evaluate the environmental and social impact of those projects – how they will affect citizens' lives and surroundings. And another important point: the community and civic groups are actively involved. — Doug Peeples

AT&T Smart Cities and the Dallas Innovation Alliance bring new solutions focused on citizen engagement and the environment

AT&T* Smart Cities momentum continues with the launch of the DIA Smart Cities Living Lab powered by AT&T (Living Lab). The Living Lab is a multi-phased smart cities project in Dallas. The project is spearheaded by the Dallas Innovation Alliance (DIA) in collaboration with AT&T and other technology leaders in the public and private sector. AT&T, a Foundational Partner for the DIA, used its smart cities framework to help the City of Dallas develop and apply a holistic strategy to address some of its most significant challenges. Dallas is among the eight cities participating in the AT&T Smart Cities spotlight cities initiative.

For the past year, AT&T has worked with the DIA and the City of Dallas to bring together some of the largest and most innovative IoT solution providers in the world. Dallas is now one of the first U.S. cities to have an active living laboratory to showcase smart cities technology.

"We applaud the Dallas Innovation Alliance for their commitment to advance transformative change in Dallas through the use of smart cities technology," said Mike Zeto, general manager, AT&T Smart Cities. "Smart cities solutions have the potential to address many problems in a city, including infrastructure, safety and environmental. Having a holistic strategy is key. You must also assemble the right technology solutions and solution providers to address the current and future needs of the city. We’re lending our time, resources and support to help Dallas and the DIA bring their smart cities vision to life."

Dallas is the fourth most populous metropolitan area in the U.S. It is also the fourth largest employment center in the nation. These factors helped create an environment challenged to maintain the lifestyle and opportunities that originally drew residents to the city.

The City of Dallas and the DIA share a strategic vision to use the Living Lab pilot as a way to measure and evaluate the social and environmental impact of smart cities solutions. After months of planning, the first phase of the Living Lab project is now officially underway, setting Dallas on the path of becoming a more connected, sustainable city.

"Today, technology impacts every aspect of our lives. Being a smart city is not just about offering the latest products. It is about solving peoples’ problems through innovation and strategic planning," said Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings. "The Dallas Innovation Alliance has provided a great platform to bring together entities across the city, partner with citizens and drive efforts to create a smart city environment for the benefit of Dallasites."

"We could not be more thrilled to launch the first phase of the DIA Smart Cities Living Lab in Dallas’ historic West End," commented Jennifer Sanders, Executive Director, Dallas Innovation Alliance. "This effort is the culmination of the hard work and dedication of our partners across the City of Dallas, civic, academic, corporate partners and the community. We are particularly grateful for the support and leadership of AT&T in making this vision a reality for Dallas. This is just the beginning, we look forward to deploying additional solutions in the DIA Smart Cities Living Lab this year, and rapidly expanding to other parts of the city."

AT&T is providing secure, reliable connectivity for all the solutions featured in the Living Lab. The solutions include:

Intelligent LED Lighting: LED street lights are one way cities can reduce carbon emissions. Through a separate collaboration with Current powered by GE, the Living Lab footprint is brighter and more energy-efficient. Many of the street lights within the Living Lab have now been converted to LED. The new LED street lights are also on intelligent controls for remote adjustments and outage tracking. LED street lights are energy efficient and can help reduce carbon emissions.

Interactive Digital WayPoint: To foster citizen engagement and access to city services, the Living Lab now houses an interactive digital WayPoint kiosk provided by CIVIQ Smartscapes. CIVIQ’s hardware—a beautiful, interactive public WayPoint is supported by integrated software and a highly secured virtual private network, designed to help residents and visitors find their way around the city—for events, shopping and points of interest. Citizens can also access up-to-date information on public transit options, schedules and routes, enabling them to explore the city more efficiently. The WayPoint kiosk also offers free USB charging ports and access to City of Dallas non-emergency services. CIVIQ’s collaboration with AT&T and the DIA shines a light on Dallas’ intelligent urban infrastructure plan.  CIVIQ’s people-centered technology is a great model for cities to increase citizen engagement and inclusion. From our work with other cities, CIVIQ sees the increased engagement improving the quality of life for all.

Environmental Sensors: Ericsson has deployed an environmental sensor solution within the Living Lab footprint. The solution measures four different types of pollutants as well as temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure and particulates (allergen levels). Additionally, Ericsson will provide the DIA the ability to monitor environmental data via a web application that is powered by the Ericsson AppIoT Platform. Environmental monitoring requires analyzing high volumes of time-coded data that is generated by numerous sources. It is important to have a highly secure platform that can ingest the data, apply common logic, and then make this data available to the City, the developer community, and all local stakeholders.

Phase 2 of the Living Lab is expected to launch later this year.  During the second phase, the DIA and AT&T expect to evaluate additional deployments of other smart cities solutions, as well as make enhancements to current services.



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