Big techs clean up the city

January 24th, 2019

In our weekly news filter ‘What We’re Clicking On’, we share the most interesting publications related to the future of cities, buildings and interiors.

Hangzhou has a brain

Big tech companies increasingly feel the urge to collaborate with the cities in sustainability projects. Alibaba has applied its ‘City brain’, to its hometown Hangzhou, which was once ranked the fifth most congested city of China. City Brain uses AI to collect location data and by analyzing it in real time in order to prevent congestion by coordinating 1,000 road signals. Hangzhou has now dropped to the 57th of the list and Alibaba states that its tool has ‘shortened commutes and helped first respondents by enabling fire trucks and ambulances to halve the amount of time to get to the scene’. Read more about City Brain here.
In Germany, Volkswagen and Siemens launched a smart traffic system aimed to predict ‘green waves’ of traffic lights. According to McKinsey Global Institute, cities that implement these kinds of systems could cut commutes by 15 to 20 percent by 2025.

Photo by Alibaba