A telltale clue that you’re in a smart city is prominent LED lighting infrastructure, and five of the smartest global cities are absolutely festooned with futuristic lampposts.
Lux Review highlighted which cities are the global leaders when it comes to integrating advanced lighting and other smart technologies into the urban environment.
Lux crowned the Spanish metropolis of Barcelona as is top smart city, largely because of its lighting.
Connected technology fitted to lampposts allows city computers two measure traffic, crowds and pollution. And following a severe drought a few years back, Barcelona’s new streetlights were also rigged to serve as weather monitors.
The streetlight’s onboard sensors track irrigation levels and rainfall help the city more efficiently run municipal sprinkler systems.
Next up is San Francisco, which Lux noted has been a leading smart city for years, partially due to its proximity to Silicon Valley.
The city recently announced that it would replace 18.500 light-pressure sodium street light fixtures with smart LEDs. Wireless smart controllers will allow the city to use the new LED fixtures to remotely monitor light performance and warn the city when each light burns out, which will increase safety and save money.
And these lights will be the greenest street lighting in the state as they will be powered with 100% clean energy.
Copenhagen is another smart city that is leading by lighting, and aims to become carbon neutral by 2025.
Nearly half of the Danish city’s older street lights were recently replaced with LED versions which brighten when cars draw near, and dim after they pass.
These light fixtures also contain sensors that capture data to improve city services like municipal waste collection.
LA has seen big savings already
Next is Singapore which has launched an ambitious “smart nation” strategy that has seen the Asian city-state wired up with huge numbers of wireless sensors that track everything from garbage cans to traffic.
In the area of lighting, Singapore has partnered with Philips Lighting to develop a connected streetlight management system. And the government has also teamed up with Scottish visible light communication firm pureLiFi to bring this revolutionary technology to Singapore.
Lastly, Lux cited Los Angeles as a smart city light leader because of its plan to convert more than 200,000 old school streetlights into smart LED fixtures. With the project only 80% complete, LA has already saved $9 million and seen reductions in crime thanks to better lighting.
The new smart poles have wireless capability and improve phone reception. They also can monitor for lighting outages, parking availability and listen for car crashes, reporting this information back to the city.