A ‘Smart’ City

Wellington as a ‘smart’ city

As cities become increasingly complex and diverse in their populations, the demands on city infrastructure, amenities and natural resources are rising.  This is occurring alongside contradictory pressures to reduce resource use (to contribute to environmental goals) and lower costs to residents of running the city (as a result of economic downturn).  To respond to these challenges Wellington needs to become a smart city.

Many cities are approaching these same issues in ways that are referred to as ‘smart development’ or ‘smart cities’.  They use new technologies to improve ‘intelligence’ on how the city operates (and, importantly, how people operate within it) and improve the efficiency of the response.  It’s about gathering good data in timely, cost-effective and efficient ways.

With a highly educated population, Wellington is well-placed as a city that can learn, adapt and innovate.  Smart cities can make use of new technologies to gather information on any number of city activities or functions, from traffic flows to water usage to trends in swimming pool use.

Smart city infrastructure also supports the kind of environment that can attract ‘smart’ people.  ICT infrastructure, research and development systems and creative innovation networks – this is the kind of infrastructure a city needs to support creative and knowledge-intensive economic growth.  Wellington’s focus on being a smart city will emphasise ideas, creativity and innovation as well as new technologies.

Developing smarter services and infrastructure will support Wellington to respond to increasing quality-of-life expectations with sustainable approaches, as well as developing the infrastructure needed to support quality knowledge-sector jobs and industries.

To be a ‘smart’ city, Wellington needs to:

  • Use new technologies to improve quality results and efficiencies in city infrastructure, amenities and natural resource use.
  • Develop ‘smart’ infrastructure to support Wellington’s creative, knowledge-intensive economic growth and quality jobs.