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Geelong foreshore receives Smart City upgrade to improve safety and declutter public spaces

Geelong VIC, Australia

At a Glance

With an annual population growth rate of 2.5% and a need to update outdated infrastructure, the City of Greater Geelong used funding from the Smart Cities and Suburbs Program to build a smart city network, modernizing outdated infrastructure to support a growing population.

Problem Addressed

The Federal Smart Cities and Suburbs Program was seeking innovative, technology-based collaborations between Australian Cities, suburbs, and towns addressing urban challenges.

Geelong is the second largest city in Victoria, Australia after Melbourne. It is known as the Gateway City, and offers affordable housing and a relaxing port city lifestyle.

The city of Geelong created a Smart City Framework that outlines the lack of connectivity, data, and innovation in the local government and its vision to achieve a more connected, safe and more livable Geelong for its residents.

On the path to becoming a smarter city, Geelong was faced with the challenge of harnessing data and insight to keep track of the ‘health’ of the city and its residents. The City of Greater Geelong is also experiencing record rates of population growth and had forecasted a growth rate of 2.5% annually going forward. To best manage and respond to these existing and emerging challenges, Geelong sought to implement smart technologies.

Specifically, the City of Greater Geelong was seeking a consolidated approach to technology infrastructure along the city's waterfront which was limited, fragmented or duplicated, thus creating cluttered and unsafe spaces. At the same time, the city wanted to be able to gather data and manage the insights to generate a better connected network of assets to improve sustainability and efficiency. The collected data also needed to be made available to the public.

The Geelong waterfront, which is one of Australia’s most stunning waterfronts and stretches along the bay for 3.3km is a highly frequented walking and running hotspot. The outdated infrastructure was no longer capable of servicing the needs for safety, connectivity, or data of the numerous daily visitors nor was it able to keep up with the fast-moving world of smart technology. Creating a safe and well-connected environment for its residents and tourists to the area was an important step in the city's smart city strategy.

The City of Greater Geelong used/is using a network of connected SMART.NODEs™ to address this/these challenge(s).

Solution(s) Used

The primary solution was the installation of SMART.NODEs™ . The world’s most advanced street light alternative, accommodates the full suite of Smart City services and features, like CCTV, Wi-Fi receivers, devices to smart bin sensors, smart parking sensors, and smart lighting. In this way, ENE.HUB was able to address the city’s concerns of the limited and fragmented technology infrastructure along the city's waterfront which created cluttered and unsafe spaces.

Partnering with ENE.HUB enabled the City to install eight SMART.NODEs™ along Geelong’s Waterfront. This process removed and rehoused technology hanging off poles including CCTV, Wi-Fi receivers, devices to smart bin sensors, smart parking sensors and safety lighting. On top of these existing services the SMART.NODEs™ are enabling the City to install additional technology, including environmental sensors and public address systems. Further the City now has capacity to install further Smart City Services due to the SMART.NODE™s modular design. To make this process as easy and efficient as possible, ENE.HUB undertook all the necessary digging, trenching and laid the fibre to all 8 SMART.NODEs™. This is part of ENE.HUB's standard offering to land authorities globally.

Supporting this, ENE.HUB also installed a LoRaWan network which enables the connection of environmental sensors to monitor the waterfront space. LoRaWan, which stands for Long Range Wide Area Network, operates wirelessly and connects services like sensors or cameras to the internet, creating a ‘Internet of Things’. For example, LoRaWan is used globally to enable smart parking, asset management, smart waste management, environmental management and public safety applications.

Geelong was looking to harness data and insight to keep track of the ‘health’ of its city and residents. All data gathered is delivered to the public via new Open Data platform – Geelong Data Exchange. This enables Geelong residents to not only access the data but also to utilise it enabling true data democracy for the city and its residents and visitors.

The City of Greater Geelong also decided to implement ENE.HUBS IoT & Data Management System - e3. It was designed to seamlessly integrate legacy systems; it allows for real-time visualisation of data and sophisticated data analysis. The Cities Use cases can be simply and effectively developed, which improves operations and increase efficiency.

Smart City Services deployed into the local government area: Public Wi-Fi (Wi-Fi 6), 4G/5G, Decorative Beacon, Smart Controlled LED lighting and beacons, CCTV Camera System, Wayfinding signs and banners, General-purpose power points, Floodlighting, LoRaWan, Optical fibre, PTZ Cameras, Speakers, CMS - a Central Management System software platform with command-and-control functionality.

Outcomes

  1. An efficient, cost effective, safe and visually pleasing smart city solution and a platform to manage new technology infrastructure in public spaces
  2. The installed infrastructure is also fibre connected providing 4G/5G connections without the need for large towers.
  3. The Central Management System, e3, allows the City to manage and control all Smart City Services provided by the smart city network.
  4. This smart city solution is cost effective and sustainable, providing land authorities with a vendor and carrier agnostic smart city platform.
  5. Geelong can now offer free public Wi-Fi, smart lighting and overall increased safety to its residents while also transforming the foreshore into a smarter and more functional public space.

Lessons Learned

  1. Begin planning the adoption of new technologies in advance as the implementation of new, innovative technologies & business models can be slowed by outdated policies and legal requirements.

Who Should Consider?

Cities and land authorities who are looking to deploy smart city services like 4G/5G, wi-fi, CCTV, IoT Networks like LoRaWan, Electric Vehicle Charging and Digital Display Screens into their public spaces.

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