Two catalytic events in 2015 created momentum to create Denver Smart City:
- The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart City Challenge galvanized the City and County of Denver to think of transformative, multidisciplinary Smart City projects that could improve mobility. Denver was one of seven national finalists provided the opportunity to think beyond normal budget constraints, knowledge barriers and technological hurdles to identify a concrete path forward with a focus on innovative technologies, vehicle electrification and connected neighborhoods.
- Panasonic’s move to 61st and Pena and subsequent public-private partnership with Denver is accelerating the creation of technology solutions that neither industry nor government can complete on their own.
Denver Smart City builds on a culture of process-improvement at the City and County of Denver. In 2011, Mayor Michael B. Hancock created the Peak Performance program. Peak partners with city departments/agencies to empower employees to improve their work process through training, coaching and support.
Why is it important?
With global megatrends such as population growth, urbanization and climate change, resource limitations are placing considerable pressure on cities around the world. These trends threaten to add to existing problems that disproportionately affect our most vulnerable populations such as:
- Smog and other environmental degradation
- Aging public infrastructure
Denver faces many of these same challenges:
- 23% population increase into Denver (10,000 – 15,000 new residents annually)
- Increased congestion (73% of trips in Denver are Single Occupancy Vehicles (SOV), up 3% from last year)
- 100-plus traffic-related deaths in Denver since January 2016
- 23.9% of residents live near or below the poverty rate, with limited mobility options
- 30% increase in the cost of living since 2010
- Ozone non-attainment area
- Nearly 1 in 10 Denver residents have asthma
- 53% of Denver residents think air quality is poor
Smart City efforts can help:
- Mitigate residents' day-to-day pain points by providing easier access to city services.
- Integrate technology into the built environment. Using data and modeling alongside identified residents pain points, we will look at problems holistically to provide lasting solutions.
- Decrease the percentage of Single Occupancy Vehicles (SOVs) in Denver.
- Reduce, detect, and prevent traffic accidents by fully integrating intelligent transportation systems and public safety systems.