One of the easiest ways to lower city expenses is through digitalization, making the 21st-century switch from traditional information systems to digital displays. Slovenia’s capital city, Ljubljana, is considered one of the most liveable cities on the globe, with a series of ground-breaking projects that have helped earn it the title of European Green Capital back in 2016. After taking on this role, Ljubljana continues to thrive as an example of sustainability, spearheading movements like the digitalization of bus stops in the city center. Let’s take a look at how this one step is impacting a larger plan to improve quality of life for Ljubljana’s citizens.-Bruno De Man
As a way to incorporate smart—and user-friendly—solutions, many cities are turning to one eco-friendly method: smart e-signs. According to Visionect, “Digital signs help a city translate ICT into better public services for citizens, enabling the creation of an integrated Smart City.” A few of the advantages include informing citizens about traffic congestion in real time; modernizing bus stops so that they display to-the-minute arrival information; and creating billboards that can be updated in an instant with news about upcoming municipal happenings. Not only will citizens be more informed about events taking place in their city, e-signs are environmentally friendly, saving resources like paper. Ljubljana is one city that is setting an example when it comes to streamlining city services by updating existing infrastructure with more advanced features, such as Visionect-equipped electronic paper displays on bus stops, which has minimal environmental impact, emits no light pollution and runs on sustainable energy sources. Ljubljana is the first city to use electronic paper technology to digitalize its public transport, allowing passengers to view digital versions of bus schedules, in addition to current arrival times and notices about disruptions or closures for that particular bus line. After seeing this solution in action, cities from London to Singapore are already following Ljubljana’s lead and turning to “energy-saving electronic ink” as a way to display civic announcements.
E-signs, however, is just one part of Ljubljana’s digital transformation. The city is also going the electronic route with its healthcare system, unrolling eHealth solutions like electronic health records. Districts like BTC, one of the largest shopping and business centers in Europe, meanwhile, are serving as the city’s own test ground for smart solutions, where everything from noise-monitoring sensors to smart city platforms are being researched and developed, progressing the city’s digital transformation one project at a time.