Toronto pilots new smart city technologies with Intel, Microsoft

Toronto pilots new smart city technologies with Intel, Microsoft

City partners with Microsoft, Intel, and others, to increase city efficiency.

The City of Toronto in Canada has chosen a number of technologies to pilot in its smart city initiative.

In partnership with Microsoft, Intel, QuadReal Property Group, the IESO, Fasken Law, and the Build in Canada Innovation Program, the city will trial a range of Internet of Things (IoT) proposals in its Urban Pilot Program, also known as UPPlift: Toronto.

The solutions will use a mix of the IoT, advanced sensors, and artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance facility efficiency, and improve citizens’ experience of the built environment.

Smart environments

Among the pilot technologies are ArgosAI’s parking security and analytics system, which will be used to count people, manage space usage, and assess advertising impact.

The city will also look at Binners’ trash removal service, which is focused on continuously organising and simplifying the process, and enabling sustainable disposal. Meanwhile,  Intuitive Robotics offers a smart AI module to detect and accurately route items into the correct waste category.

VSETA building and facility monitoring is another solution being trialled by the city – a mix of smart facilities software, sensors, and other technologies that enable real-time monitoring of properties through a private wireless sensor network.

Eddy Home’s intelligent water damage prevention system, and Spark EV’s commercial electric vehicle charging stations are among other solutions being tested by the city.

Toronto has also chosen Infranovate for its solar-powered smart benches, which provide analytics, Wi-Fi connectivity, and mobile charging.

The technologies will be deployed across test-bed properties owned by the city and the QuadReal Property Group. Participants will receive technology support and expertise from Microsoft and Intel, and startup legal advice from Fasken.

“We are thrilled to see excellence in local innovation shine through in the UPPlift: Toronto programme,” said Michael Kolm, chief transformation officer for the City of Toronto.

“Toronto is looking forward to piloting ground-breaking new ideas and smart city solutions to drive improvements in the city’s connectedness, efficiency, and sustainability. These solutions have the potential to make city living easier and more inclusive.”

Internet of Business says

This and other smart city programmes throughout the world reveal that local ambition, innovation, and good management are essential. At heart, smart city programmes are about local leadership, not just technology innovation.

  • This is really interesting news, because unlike most smart-city imitative Toronto has shown an all-round approach, rather than implementing one module at a time. Most cities tend to first roll-out a single solution that is very specific and solves very particular problems. Here, we can see the opposite with a complex approach.

    I’m mostly interested in ArgosAI’s parking security and analytics system, since it is close to my area of expertise. Will it include some sort of advanced vehicle detection system with a whole infrastructure of smart parking sensors installed? If yes, will they be working with a third-party vendor, since as far as I know, this kind of hardware is a little bit out of their expertise? There aren’t that many smart parking solutions vendors on the market right now. Even less, which actually can accommodate a project of such scale.

    Regardless, I’m sure that we’ll be paying attention to the entire imitative as it develops.