No broadband, few services, too much traffic – Germany’s cities urgently need to catch up in terms of digitization. This is well known. For a long time citizens have wished for smarter cities with new services and innovative services. These are the results of a representative online survey conducted by the research institute Civey among 5,000 citizens. At the top of the wish list are intelligent solutions to optimise administration, mobility and security.
For this reason, six commercial enterprises, including ioki, Deutsche Bahn’s division for smart on-demand mobility, have joined forces to form the “Stadt in Bewegung” initiative: “Worldwide, 80 percent of the population will soon be living in metropolitan areas. That’s why the metropolises in particular must solve the central problems of our time: climate, infrastructure, security and especially mobility,” says Markus Pellmann-Janssen, Head of Sales DACH at ioki, summarizing the various challenges faced by “Stadt in Bewegung”.
Other founding partners of the initiative are the technology group Cisco Meraki, Signify (formerly Philips Lighting), DB Regio Bus, Cleverciti as a provider of smart parking solutions and the system integrator avodaq. Together they want to support cities in digitizing their infrastructure and developing future-oriented services for their citizens. “People in Germany expect a well-functioning infrastructure and modern services that simplify their lives and make cities a better place to live. This is where we want to help,” says Markus Wissmann, Director Smart & Connected Communities, EMEAR at Cisco. “Many cities and regions have already embarked on the road to the digital future, but in many places they still lack speed.”
Citizen services, intelligent lighting and modern mobility offerings are highly popular
More than half of the surveyed citizens (56.1 percent) want more digital services at their place of residence. If they could change just one thing in their city, citizens say, they see the greatest need for change in the use of online applications in public administration (46.8 percent). They also want intelligent, low-resource street lighting and modern mobility services.
“The turnaround in mobility is on everyone’s lips. We can only achieve it if we develop new services locally and at the same time make the existing traffic flow more efficient. And we will do this together with all players from politics, administration, business and the public,” says Guido Verhoefen, Head of Marketing and Business Development at DB Regio Bus. “Municipalities play a key role as drivers of digital transformation – especially at the interface between urban and rural areas. According to the latest survey, almost three-quarters of Germans (69.8 percent) support the use of digital solutions to optimize traffic flows in cities, prevent traffic jams and make it easier to find a parking space.
“Increasing digitisation offers a great opportunity to bring even more mobility and less traffic onto the roads in the future. The change in mobility is not only happening in our minds, but above all on the roads,” adds Pellmann-Janssen from ioki. As a platform for on-demand mobility, ioki offers a sustainable and demand-oriented solution for the first and last mile, thereby strengthening public transport – whether in the city or in the countryside.
Tailor-made digital solutions for every municipality
In order to cope with these tasks, the municipalities now receive support. The initiative “Stadt in Bewegung” aims to make cities more attractive and sustainable. With the help of digital technologies, it wants to improve the quality of life – for example through efficient services for citizens, better transport planning, integrated mobility services and advanced lighting.
The companies behind the initiative contribute both sound user know-how from various industries and comprehensive IT expertise. In the coming weeks, the “Stadt in Bewegung” initiative will present its offerings and services at a roadshow and discuss the potential of the digitized city with leading politicians and experts. The networking of different service areas in the cities offers enormous possibilities. This is where the initiative comes in and shows concrete fields of action. The highlight: The initiative makes the latest technologies and the possibilities of the digital city tangible in a high-tech bus and “experienceable” in the truest sense of the word.
The prelude to “Stadt in Bewegung” in Dortmund takes place together with Ullrich Sierau, Lord Mayor of the City of Dortmund. The decision for Dortmund is no coincidence. In recent years, the Ruhr metropolis has made good progress on its way to becoming a smart city: The city’s decision-makers have made digitisation a matter for the city’s management and are managing corresponding projects in concert. Dortmund is hosting this year’s Digital Summit of the Federal Government and has been nominated by the EU for the “City of the Future”. In the coming weeks, the city-in-motion bus will travel to Frankfurt am Main and to the Smart Country Convention in Berlin.