Despite not winning the Smart Cities Challenge this past year, the City of Mississauga is looking to forge ahead with their plans as it presented its Smart City Master Plan to general committee yesterday.

This plan will guide the city’s modernization strategy for the next ten years as it tries to evolve into a smart city; helping guide them in policy creation and the general digital transformation of the city. The plan will go to council for final approval July 3.

“Mississauga is working to become a municipal leader when it comes to leveraging smart technology and innovation to engage our residents and solve some of our city’s most pressing issues,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “A ‘Smart Mississauga’ will be a well-connected, sustainable city where everyone can live, work and thrive for generations to come. Our new plan will help ensure that as Mississauga transforms into a modern, global city, that we stay at the forefront of innovation and technology to ensure we are not only meeting the needs of the present but giving future generations the ability to meet theirs.”

City of Mississauga CIO Shawn Slack speaks to attendees about the city’s digital transformation journey during SAP Canada’s third annual Smart Cities Forum on April 23, 2018. File photo.

Some of the initiatives presented in the plan include: the creation of labs to test new tech in real-life context with opportunities for the public to be involved, giving the public a chance to help solve local innovation challenges, a roaming engagement hub where the public can help shape the future of the city, and a smart city policy that they would like to co-create with the public.

“Over the past year, we’ve engaged our community in an extensive series of in-person and online discussions where we received valuable input on our proposed Smart City Master Plan,” said Shawn Slack, the director of IT and chief information officer for the City of Mississauga. “The Master Plan aims to create a ‘Smart City for Everybody’ that will help bridge the divide between those who have access to technology and those who do not.”

The final goal is to create a “digital ecosystem” comprised of six components:

  • The Kit – A digital kit for individuals to help bridge the digital divide; enable mobile work
  • The Connection – Accessible digital stations located throughout the city to help connect citizens to services; enable mobile work
  • The Hub – Digital hubs that will provide opportunities for networking; connections to services, training, and tools; mobile work space
  • The Community – Digital services that provide support at a community level such as free Wi-Fi, connected parks and main streets
  • The Ride – Connected inter-modal transportation options such as bike and car sharing; electric vehicle plug-ins; Wi-Fi on city buses; automated traffic management system to ensure efficient routes for transit to and from hub locations
  • The Data – A portal that connects the digital ecosystem providing easy access to services and information including the kits, connections, hubs, and community amenities that offer choice to live, work, and play as well as support and opportunity to succeed. The use of open data, GIS and other smart city technologies will be central to the success of the portal.
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