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Tampa Leading the Country in Smart City Development

Smart City Tampa - Florida Business Innovation

Tampa is the third largest city in Florida and is one of the fastest growing. One of Tampa’s growth goals is to become a major national “smart city.” A smart city is defined as an urban area that takes an integrated approach to the city’s technological infrastructure. An increasing number of services can be delivered using 5G wireless, and other leading edge technologies.

The smart city vision for Tampa includes improvements in public safety, increased mobility, heightened productivity and environmental protections that will be used to benefit residents, business leaders and visitors. The population in and surrounding Tampa is widely diverse. People are culturally and economically diverse. The population includes seniors, millennials and veterans, all with different technological needs and comfort levels. This presents a challenge when it comes to designing smart technological solutions.

The City of Tampa has been awarded a $21 million grant to research connected vehicle technology and has partnered with the University of South Florida on the project. The partnership has started researching connected transportation through its Tampa Connected Vehicle Pilot. The pilot project is outfitting 1,600 vehicles with devices that will be able to notify the driver if speed, braking distance and other driving data show the vehicle is in a danger zone. Tampa is now recruiting motorists who would be willing to participate; incentives such as a 30 percent rebate on expressway tolls are being offered.

The City of Tampa is working to establish itself as a vibrant, innovative and sustainable community. The city is making improvements through new technologies and methods that will demonstrate its commitment to attract new start-ups and businesses. Here are some of the high-level concepts that the City plans to implement.

  1. Urban automation (automated vehicles and shuttles)
  2. Connected vehicles (leveraged software to build a strong foundation)
  3. Intelligent, sensor-based infrastructure (weather, air quality, noise, traffic cameras, etc.)
  4. Urban analytics (predictive analysis tools)
  5. User-focused mobility services and choices (integrated platforms to assist seniors and other citizens with special needs)
  6. Urban delivery and logistics (data-driven urban freight, port and garbage collection apps)
  7. Strategic business models and partnering opportunities (enhancing partnerships with utility, bike, car share and mass transit companies)
  8. Smart grid, roadway electrification and electric vehicles (smart charging grid, infrastructure and intelligent infrastructure communication)
  9. Connected, involved citizens (crowdsourcing using Waze and other applications)
  10. Architecture that supports urban automation, connected vehicles, sensor-based infrastructure, smart gird and user-focused mobility
  11. Low-cost, efficient, secure and resilient information and communications technology
  12. Smart land use (shared parking app, meet-up bike and walk to work programs and apps)
  13. Integrated approach for all vision elements

Through its Smart Tampa program, Tampa is committed to incorporating connected vehicles into the Tampa traffic ecosystem, while reducing collisions and the environmental impact of vehicles in the city. With additional private investments of over $3 billion private investment funds, Tampa residents can expect free high-speed Wi-Fi and a myriad of other transportation related services and smartphone applications to become one of the most connected environments in the world. The long-term vision incorporates goals that include walkability, wellness, sustainability and connectivity.

As Tampa continues to roll out its smart city technology, more high-paying, high-skill positions will provide a major boost to the economy, attracting more high-caliber professionals to the city.  Lanier Upshaw uses advocacy, expertise and service to help protect your business and turn problems into possibilities. Contact us to learn more about how we can help your business grow.