Before we talk about Kansas City and come of the wonderful IOT implementation ideas it is following, it is important to understand what is a smart city? Well, the smart cities council defines a ‘smart city’ as a city that uses information and communications technology to enhance its livability, workability, and sustainability.
Kansas City was amongst the first cities to adopt an IOT implemented smart life. In 2011 it became the first Google Fiber installation site and became a hot bed for IOT implementation projects. On the event of declaration of Kansas city as officially becoming a ‘smart city’, the Mayor – Sly James said “Smart city sensors and digital tools are cool, but understanding how to use these tools and the data that they generate bridges the gap between cool and smart”
The IOT implementation vision of Kansas can be seen in the image below:
Implementation of IoT in Kansas City
Presently, there are numerous cities which are planning to implement the Internet of Things for the management of various necessary systems. Kansas City is listed among the promising achievers. Since the technology is fairly new, the city is working in collaboration with Cisco for the development of a 2.2-mile corridor centered in the city’s downtown. This corridor is a classic example of IOT implemented projects. It will feature kiosks with transportation as well as local service information for the residents and visitors. Moreover, the plan also involves the offering of more than 50 blocks of free public WiFi for the public and a broad system of smart pavement sensors for supervising traffic flow.
Apart from the infrastructural aspect, the project also deals with the creation of new partnership models for Kansas City and its technology partners which includes Cisco and Sprint. Moreover, it also covers the development of local IoT-focused start-up and IOT implementation projects incubators to promote local businesses. Such projects will help cities understand the true power of IoT implementation ideas and their capability to set pace for futuristic lifestyle.
The KC Streetcar Project
The citizens of Kansas City in 2012 approved the launch as well as funding for a two-mile streetcar which would run through the center of downtown. The total investment involved in this project is worth $102 million and is aimed to increase mobility and back local tourism. This is an IOT implementation project. This route will serve 16 stops starting from River Market to Union Station; this stretch of public transit would be made free to all riders.
Currently, the project has moved forward and has become larger than a transit project. Taking full advantage of this break, the city plans to join a $15 million investment for the creation a network of sensors, smart parking and kiosks, which would be launched along with the opening of the streetcar. After its completion, this corridor will be tagged as one of America’s first urban sectors fully powered by the Internet of Things.
Fully Loaded Technology Ecosystem
It is interesting to know that, the IoT implemented component for the Kansas City Streetcar corridor would cost more than $15 million during the 10 years period. However, more than one-third will be paid for by taxpayers and $12 million has been funded by partners. Moreover, the primary agreement fixed with Cisco, is basically a public-private partnership which is surrounded with ambitious goals for the expansion of connectivity, create new revenue, improve infrastructure efficiency and spur economic development. This project is in line with Cisco’s wider Smart+Connected Communities program.