Bristol Named Leader in Smart City Technology

Bristol Named Leader in Smart City Technology

by Sarah Pereau | 12 Mar 2018

Bristol, United Kingdom won the Smart City Award at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, in February 2018.

Bristol has been leading smart city development in the United Kingdom since 2016. This year, the city’s efforts in smart city strategy and execution of digital projects put Bristol at the top, beating London in smart city technology and mobile development.

When announcing Bristol as the leading smart city of the future, the judges referenced a joint venture between the University of Bristol and Bristol City Council. The venture, called Bristol Is Open, consists of three networks that work together to make the city open using their own digital infrastructure, an “active, wireless, and a mesh network.”

The first of the three networks are the fiber network, which runs underground through Bristol. The second network is a “wireless mile of conventional wireless connectivity such as 3G and 4G, as well as a trial experiment using 5G equipment” in the city center. The third network is an “IoT mesh located in one of every 20 lampposts throughout the city” that allows for the connection of IoT devices to a central management platform.

The Bristol Is Open project put the city of Bristol in the lead in “data access, energy innovation, and community engagement.” Sensors are being used to deliver data about energy, air quality, and traffic flows. The data generated through the networks will be made public, including for the use of research and development projects.

The city of Bristol also hopes to have fun with the network and its new speeds, for example, by “holding a music concert across multiple venues in the city at the same time.” Bristol’s smart city initiatives strengthen their international reputation for advanced technologies for smart cities.

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Valerie Stephen
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