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article imageNew York wins smart city award for 2016

By Ken Hanly     Jul 24, 2017 in Technology
New York City - At the Smart City Expo World Congress in 2016 held in Barcelona Spain, New York was announced as the Best Smart City of 2016.
The city was recognized for its initiative, Building a Smart and Equitable City. The project was led by the Mayor's Office of Technology and Innovation.
There were four pillars to the city plan to make New York a global leader in smart technologies:
- LinkNYC that expanded connectivity among citizens;
- and Urban Tech NYC, that were for growing the innovation economy ecosystem;
- a program for piloting and scaling smart technologies;
- A set of comprehensive guidelines that would ensure equitable deployment of the smart city technologies.
Jeff Merritt, Director of Innovation at the Mayor's Office of Tech and Innovation said: “When used effectively, IoT devices — like sensors that capture pollution in the air or lights that only turn on when someone is in the room—can produce cost savings, bolster civic engagement and strengthen public health and safety."
READ MORE: The City of London launches its 'smart street' initiative.
A good example of innovation using smart technology is the program of LinkNYC which has transformed the old city pay phone system into a huge network of over 10,000 communication structures. The program provides Wi-FI hotspots, phone calls, ability to charge your cell phones and other devices and access to city services.
New York is pursuing several big IoT projects — the city is spending $3 million on sensors that will improve public safety and is investing $20 million in a program to connect vehicles. New York also has a special program providing 9,300 square meters of affordable space and equipment to help entrepreneurs build smart and sustainable solutions to problems.
Merritt had an upbeat appraisal of New York's policies: “New York City’s strategy for a smart and equitable city is rooted in a series of practical steps and tools that city agencies can use to leverage new technologies.
"This includes a focus on expanding Internet connectivity across the five boroughs to unleash new opportunities, growing the local innovation economy and accelerating public-private partnerships, working with communities to develop solutions that meet neighbourhood needs, and always putting New Yorkers first as we test and deploy new technologies.”
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