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Living Lab: Urban Planning Goes Digital in Spanish 'Smart City'

Matt Ball on March 17, 2013 - in Smart Cities

Cities around the world aim to become “smart cities,” but in Santander, Spain, the goal has already become a reality. Thousands of sensors help alert residents to traffic jams, regulate the watering in city parks and dim the street lamps.

An old port city on Spain’s Atlantic coast has surged to the forefront of those aspiring to be smart cities. Despite its cash-strapped finances, the city of Santander, birthplace of the major bank of the same name, is already quite smart.

Luis Muñoz, 48, is an IT professor at the University of Cantabria. He received nearly €9 million ($11.7 million) in research money, most of it from the EU, to develop a prototype smart city. Muñoz permanently installed 10,000 sensors around downtown Santander, throughout an area of 6 square kilometers (2.3 square miles). The sensors are hidden inside small gray boxes attached to street lamps, poles and building walls. Some are even buried beneath the asphalt of parking lots.

Read more via Spiegel Online

About Matt Ball

Matt Ball is a former editor and publisher of V1 Media.

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