Smart Cities around the world


Lydie Polfer: Luxembourg 

Dieter Reiter: Munich, Germany

Yoo Jeong-bok: Songdo City, Incheon, South Korea
LAND AREA: APPROX. 1,029 km2


1. In what way does your city qualify as a “smart” city?
Lydia Polfer: The City of Luxembourg is “smart” because of its international and multicultural population: it has indeed over 69 per cent of non-Luxembourgish residents and people from over 160 different nationalities living together harmoniously and respecting one another.
Dieter Reiter: In our Smart City project “Smarter Together”, we are essentially combining the new with what has already been planned. Above all, it is a cooperative project. Munich and the other cities, science and technology partners involved can all learn from each other. They can also develop the project blocks together with the public. It is precisely this interdisciplinary yet locally effective exchange that is the “smart” element.
Yoo Jeong-bok: Currently, for the purpose of creating an IT-based Smart City, Incheon has endeavoured to secure the city‘s competitiveness and integrated all possible cutting-edge IT technology such as broadband self-organizing networks, intelligent building system, geographical information system and intelligent traffic system. Based on this, the city is qualified to realise an environment which is more convenient and economical.


2. What is the role of sustainability in this context? Is it possible for a city to grow without endangering the needs of future generations?
Lydia Polfer: Sustainability plays a very important role. We have to ensure that future generations benefit from the same quality of life that we know today. Growing and fulfilling the future generations’ needs and expectations – that are constantly developing and changing – is a big challenge that the City of Luxembourg is prepared to accept in order to guarantee smooth and smart growth.
Dieter Reiter: We want to remove over 20 per cent of CO2 emissions, bring renewable energies up to 20 per cent of our energy mix, and increase energy efficiency by over 20 per cent. To do this, we are working on building low-energy districts, renovating residential buildings and developing innovative methods of mobility.
Yoo Jeong-bok: We have diverse challenges in going ahead with the Smart City project, such as the digital gap between new parts of town and the old town. However, based on the world class IT infrastructures we have built, a city-wide Smart City for both old town and Incheon Free Economic Zone has been implemented. It will ensure sustainable city growth and offer citizens safe and convenient services.


3. What does your smart city project focus on?
Lydia Polfer: The Smart City projects cover many subjects, but focus particularly on telecommunication and access to information, mobility, accessibility for people with special needs and the environment. All the projects aim to simplify people’s lives. The needs of citizens are always at the centre of the city’s considerations and efforts.
Dieter Reiter: The “Smarter Together” project focuses on energy-efficient districts, sustainable mobility and digitally connected infrastructure and services such as open Wi-Fi or “intelligent street lamps”. Mobility stations will make a big difference to flexible and individual transport in the district, whether through cargo bikes, e-bikes or integrated car sharing services. Central information columns and a special app for the district will give people all the information they need here.
Yoo Jeong-bok: We had finished the construction of the ICT (Incheon Container Terminal) infrastructure by 2014. Now the second stage of the project is under way. With this project, we aim to create an IT-based Smart City where we can exchange information on things like infrastructure and residential facilities from all parts of the city.


4. How do your citizens benefit from the project?
Lydia Polfer: The City of Luxembourg constantly improves its applications and adapts them to the users’ needs, e.g. in order to provide real time information about public transportation or free parking spaces, to order forms or documents, to report issues to the municipal administration…
Dieter Reiter: The central aim is to significantly increase quality of life for people in the district. Residents in Neuaubing-Westkreuz will develop solutions together with businesses and local users in future. Experts call this co-creation. This happens in our “District Laboratory”.
Yoo Jeong-bok: Our smart technologies will be expanded in accordance with the concept of “eco city” to preserve nature and offer citizens pleasant city infrastructure. To cope with problems caused in the process of city development, such as pollution or waste, we will introduce eco, construction and IT technologies, which will help citizens to live in an eco-friendly environment.


5. In your opinion, which technology plays the most important role in creating a smart city?
Lydia Polfer: A technological infrastructure allowing the development of high-performance applications, fast data traffic and processing of large quantities of data combined with an efficient and secure network are essential in order to create a Smart City. The city has its own fibre-optic network and a Wi-Fi network that covers almost every urban quarter. The city attaches great importance to making the municipal administration’s public data available to its citizens. The city keeps up its effort in the field of open data and is working continuously to provide citizens with information that’s relevant to them.
Dieter Reiter: The term “integrated infrastructure” could be used to combine many systems that already exist. We are developing a smart data management platform for this, where important information can be collected. That makes our work in planning easier and helps people who can use the district app to view everything.
Yoo Jeong-bok: In a Smart City, information collected from diverse terminals, CCTV cameras and sensors is processed, analysed and distributed. The most important thing is to integrate these diverse services using a platform solution based on the IoT. For this the IFEZ (Incheon Free Economic Zone) launched a Public Private Partnership in 2012 and developed an integrated IFEZ platform. Each network is a broadband, self-organising network to deal with large volumes of traffic. It produces high-value-added information by processing all the data gathered in Smart City Operation Center.


6. What will the role of smart cities be in the future?
Lydia Polfer: People are more and more interested in innovation and call for transparency, access to information and participation in projects and decision-making. So, the cities that would like to position themselves as “Smart Cities” will have to develop projects that accommodate this need in order to stay attractive and competitive not only for their own citizens, but also for employers, investors and tourists.
Dieter Reiter: Smart Cities are certainly a significant building block of future urban development. Nevertheless, this concept needs to tested for both its practicality and the real benefits it brings for residents. Not everything that is technically feasible is also sensible from a planning or social viewpoint.
Yoo Jeong-bok: With the Smart City project, we will create an IT-based Smart City where information gathered from all parts of the city, including infrastructure and residential facilities, can be exchanged. It will contribute to realising a human-centred environment.

Related Posts

  • The Smart City offers lots of opportunities for the application of new products and services. Many start-up businesses are developing innovative ideas…

  • With the global population growing exponentially and more and more people moving to cities, plus the continued industrialisation of society, the Smart…

  • Eine exponentiell wachsende Weltbevölkerung und immer mehr Menschen, die in die Städte ziehen, gekoppelt mit einer weiter steigenden Industrialisierung – das sind…