In April of this year the city of Racine, Wisconsin was named one of five winners to the Smart Cities Readiness Challenge. As one of the winners, the city will receive access to expertise and financing for projects “using technology and data-informed decisions to better deliver city services and create a more equitable community”.
“Winning the Smart Cities Readiness Challenge is the culmination of more than a year’s worth of work in which the city has brought together amazing community partners around the idea the we can use technology to deliver better services to our residents while at the same time creating a more inclusive and equitable City,” said mayor Cory Mason.
Mayor Mason recently announced a Smart Cities September series of events that will lay the groundwork for change. The series has three main events: a two-day smart cities conference, a readiness workshop, and the Racine Innovation and Technology Gala. During the events city officials will announce public and private partnerships that have been formed to carry out smart cities projects.
Connectivity is Racine’s first priority through the program. The city has 2,400 miles (~3860 km) of cables but it needs further connectivity to bring high-speed internet to the entire community. The city is also looking at smart mobility, energy and sustainability.
“This whole state is really an industrial state,” said Racine chief innovation officer William Martin. “It thrived on industrial jobs. When it changed from industry to service, we weren’t prepared. Now it’s switching to digital. This is our opportunity to lead the way into that digital economy.”
More information on the series is at www.racinesmartcity.com.