As part of the Smart London Plan consultation, we asked for your views using sensor data to improve public services. Some practical uses for sensors are already up-and-running in London, some are being planned:
Smart lampposts: Street lighting can be automatically switched off when it isn’t needed. It can be tailored to particular lighting conditions, reducing energy waste and potentially saving millions for the taxpayer. Lampposts could also host Wi-Fi connections, charge electric vehicles or monitor where car parking exists. In the coming years, new lampposts will be rolled out in at least six cities in Europe, including London, as part of the Sharing Cities programme.
Air quality sensors: These have become much more affordable and therefore can be places in thousands of locations in one city. City Hall is working with the Alan Turing Institute to gather together data from these sensors to better understand air pollution hotspot locations and times.
Asset management sensors: In Porto, Portugal, sensors are attached to rubbish skips to tell the authorities when they need emptying. This saves the taxpayer money by ensuring that municipal collections don’t waste time and fuel on trips to half-full containers.
What do you think of these examples? Which would you like to see more of? Which are you concerned about? Does the type of data being collected make a difference to your views?