What are Smart Cities?

According to the Smart Cities Council, “a smart city uses information and communications technology (ICT) to enhance its livability, workability and sustainability. " In smart cities, citizens, devices and assets act as sensors, collecting and communicating data which can be used analyze and manage resources more efficiently.  This network of smart and connected devices is often referred to as an Internet of Things (IoT). However, it’s not the devices themselves that make the cities that deploy them smart. Data collected from smart city devices can be analyzed and put to work to solve real problems for real people who interact with a city's infrastructure and assets. The data collected from smart city applications can have positive impacts on public safety, transportation, air quality, energy efficiency and much more.

How do Smart Cities Work?

Smart cities use information and ICT to:

  • Collect - Sensors on city devices collect data in real time
  • Process - Data is analyzed to draw meaningful insights
  • Communicate - Insights from the data are delivered to decision makers through the cloud
  • Respond - Cities can act on the insights found in the data to optimize processes and asset management.

Smart City Digital Services:

Here at CIMCON, we’re focused on building an outdoor IoT ecosystem, meant to help cities find solutions that address the many challenges that cities face. CIMCON's Connected Cloud Infrastructure allows cities to easily collect and analyze data. With help from our partner network, CIMCON's NearSky Connect provides a host of smart city digital services which enable better decision making and more impactful outcomes. Digital services include:

  • Smart street lighting
  • Smart parking
  • Video surveillance
  • Environmental monitoring
  • Electronic advertising
  • Electric vehicle charging
  • Public Wi-Fi access

Streetlight controls are the primary gateway application to the smart city. CIMCON Lighting’s development philosophy, products and services offerings, future roadmap, technology partners and go-to-market channels are all pointed squarely in this direction. With the move back to urban areas and the growth in LED upgrades as background macro events, CIMCON Lighting has adopted a set of design principles that govern our product offerings today and drive our technology roadmap for the future to create value for our customers. These are:


  • Value Today - provide products and services to customers that deliver measurable value, including lower energy, repairs and maintenance costs, higher quality of services and ancillary benefits such as reduced crime and higher property values, and platforms to create connected city applications;

  • Network Independence – create solutions that work in multiple network environments;

  • Modular Approach – protect today’s investments while building “plug & play” modules that are compatible with existing installations and provide new features and benefits;

  • Open Architecture/APIs - enable third-party, “best-in-class” solutions to join the street lighting network and take advantage of an extensive development community and wide variety of sensors and other devices; and.

  • Partner Ecosystem – utilize a go-to-market and development strategy that leverages key partner strengths.

Getting Started with Smart City Solutions

Building a smart city is a multi-step process. Cities often start by tackling their most pressing problems whether it is attracting more business investment, reducing traffic, or something else. For many cities, CIMCON’s StreetVantage Smart City Pilot Program is a good starting point.