Cambridge is the launch city for a new project that aims to make better use of urban data.
Smart city applications developer Telensa has built a solution powered by the Microsoft Azure cloud platform that creates a trust infrastructure for urban data – enabling cities to collect, protect and use their data for the benefit of all citizens.
The company defines urban data as “the mosaic of street-by-street, minute-by-minute information that makes up a city’s digital twin“. It encompasses how people use the city, the mix of traffic on the roads, and hyper-local data on air quality and noise levels.
By collecting, organising and making sense of this data, it can be used to design better city infrastructure, deliver more efficient city services, and make everything more transparent to empower citizens. It is also potentially valuable to industries such as retail, real estate and insurance.
However, the use of urban data has so far been limited by two barriers, Telensa says. The first is the cost of single-purpose sensors, and the related cost of moving video data to the cloud. The second issue is trust – how can a city’s Chief Data Officer apply best-practice policies to the data, and provide transparency to citizens on how that data is protected and used?
The new Urban Data Project has two key technology elements:
- Data is collected by Telensa Multi-Sensor Pods installed on streetlight poles, with sensors including video and radar feeding into an edge compute platform, and real-time AI and machine learning extracting insights from the raw data.
- Data from the pods is combined with other city data in a trust platform that enables cities to apply privacy policies, comply with data regulations, and make data available to improve services and drive future city revenues.
The first deployment in Cambridge is planned to take place in March
Tags: urban data