Smart cities – what do they look like?

Smart cities – what do they look like?

We hear so much about ‘smart cities’, but what do they look like in reality?

Here in Logan, we can see one being created from scratch in Yarrabilba, a new, growing community in the city’s south-west that will ultimately be home to around 45,000 people.

This greenfield community from Lendlease is incorporating smart technology as it develops, all of it connected in an intelligent, data-sharing network; an ‘Internet of Things’ that’s helping save resources and create more livable neighbourhoods.In Yarrabilba, solar-powered public bins are equipped to self-compact and send an alert when they need emptying, helping prevent unsightly and unsafe overflows.

Floodlights switch on as needed to save energy. They’re mounted on smart poles that also record and monitor air quality and noise levels. Sensors record traffic movement, and weather stations help track and predict weather. Sprinklers in public spaces also have sensors, so they know to turn off if it’s about to rain, and also record how much water is used each time.

There’s a charging station for electric cars that can power a vehicle in 20-30 minutes — making it easier for locals to make the switch from fossil fuelled vehicles — and free hi-speed Wi-Fi and emergency call points in public spaces.

Lendlease National Economic Development Manager, Pete Cummins, says people expect more from new neighbourhoods, and the Yarrabilba development provided the opportunity to incorporate smart city technology from the start via a living lab approach.

“We understand people expect richer, more connected and seamless experiences across all aspects of their lives, especially in the places they call home,” he says (see promotional video link below).

“By collaborating with technology companies, research institutions and the local community, our living labs are helping create safer, healthier and more sustainable communities.”

At Yarrabilba, that means data from smart initiatives is fed into a dashboard, helping track real-time performance levels, benchmark savings and efficiencies, and capture insights via integrated digital networks.

It’s a sign of things to come for the rest of our city.

Learn more about Yarrabilba’s living lab:


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