The city of Schenectady, New York is moving ahead with its Smart City initiative. Mayor Gary McCarthy created the Mayoral Smart City commission to take advantage of new technology for superior delivery of government services and improved quality of life.
“The future of government infrastructure is more than pipes and pavement; it is building a cohesive wireless network and utilizing sustainable technology to lower the burden on residents through more efficient services, while also improving their quality of life,” said McCarthy. “This team of experienced and impressive individuals will aid in promoting growth and development in all areas of Schenectady and help the City continue to be a leader in solving urban problems.”
A number of projects have been deployed:
Transportation and Roadways
Working with Transfinder, a local global logistics software company, the city is using software and GPS tracking to identify more efficient potential routes for garbage trucks and snow plows. Schenectady can then utilize the data received to determine preventative maintenance scheduling to reduce maintenance costs and aid in more efficient fleet management. The software is also used to gather reports to track information such as fuel consumption, operating costs and employee concerns to identify needs in the fleet.
Utility and Parking Management
The city operates a computerized traffic control system that provides maintenance reports for 60 traffic lights. Parking kiosks that accept credit cards and generate maintenance reports on their current condition are currently utilized in many areas of the city.
Installing more energy efficient street-lighting is estimated to reduce the city’s lighting bill by a third. Future plans call for the installation of WiFi transmitters, cameras and environmental sensors that could help the city operate more efficiently.
“We’re looking to see what works and what doesn’t,” said the Mayor.