Now-a-days it seems like every city is trying to modify itself in a ‘Smart City’. There are many elements that make a city smart. Water management, waste management, transportation and safety are some of the few areas of focus. ‘Future Smart Cities’ comprise the basic necessities and higher technologies for effortless and elementary living. There are various areas of development in a city which are identified in order to reshape the current condition. A simple definition of a smart city can be ‘a city which is equipped with basic infrastructure to provide quality lifestyle to its citizens’.
A relatively newer technology which is Big Data has huge potential to increase and make use of smart city services. Big Data is basically huge amounts of data which can be analyzed by businesses to make appropriate strategic moves and business decisions. Big Data Analysis is implemented to study large volumes of data to uncover patterns and get insights to extract valuable information.
Information and Communications Technology (ICT) plays a major role in Smart Cities by making data available which is collected through information technology components. This technology also famously called Internet of Things (IoT) works through communicating between connected devices while exchanging data which needs internet, wireless connections and other communication mediums. Mainly, Smart Cities make use of IoT devices to fetch data and efficiently process it for implementing it in a particular area. Smart City sensors and connected devices collect data from various Smart City Gateways installed in a city and then analyze it for better decision making. Making use of ICT in Smart Cities will help reduce environmental footprint and result in optimum use of resources.
Let’s have a look at some of the areas in a Smart City where Big Data has the biggest impact:
Ensuring the safety of citizens is a top priority for any city and it is important to protect them in any scenario. To avoid any troubles within the city, predictive analysis can be of help to study historical and geographical data to recognize when and where crimes are likely to happen. A significant amount of improvement can be seen when the desired data will turn a city into a much safer place.
- City Planning
The sensors embedded in the city provide a clear picture about what exactly is lacking in a city and how the current situation can be developed. Studying the current requirements in a city through effective use of data can help in identifying areas which need improvement and upgradation. Mapping infrastructure needs in a city is easy by making use of data with high degree of accuracy to pinpoint exactly where development is needed.
Transportation can be easily managed when Big Data comes to rescue. Everyone hates traffic but it is possible to curb traffic through proper utilization of historical data. Through analysis of data collected from transport authorities, one can study the patterns which will result in decreased traffic congestion and will help the transport authorities to come up with intelligent ways to manage and monitor transport within the city. Big data analytics will also help in reducing accidents.
- Future Proofing
With increasing urbanization, our cities are getting smarter day-by-day and there are still various other plans to fully modify the city in a Future Smart City. There is automation within the city for intelligent traffic routing with real time management and monitoring. Data collected by various sources can be utilized to provide a sustainable environment with higher energy efficiency and less wastage of resources. Through predictive analysis it is possible to analyze the growth of current infrastructure and plan for future needs of the city.
Constantly monitoring the growth of a city will provide continuous updates of development in order to make the necessary changes whenever there is a need. What amount of output is being generated after implementing the technology will give a clear idea about the development needed which is one of the keys to sustainability. Data is an important factor to determine the results of development within the city. Changes can be made in the city but it is difficult to sustain the level of development.
- Effective Spending
To transform a city it takes a lot of investment to make the necessary changes and bring about the desired results. Sometimes money is spent on renovation or remodeling of a city which falls under minor changes in the infrastructure. Using big data analytics, data collected in a smart city can suggest the majorly impacted areas and what type of upgradations are needed. Through proper analysis, investments can be made accordingly in the required fields.
In a Smart City, Big Data plays an important role to process the data collected through IoT devices, so that further analysis can be made to recognize the patterns and needs in the city. Sensors which are installed all over the city generate huge amount of data but if used effectively, there are many improvements which can be done. Big Data has a huge impact on the smart cities which define its objectives and serves as the optimum way towards better future.