Small Cities Can be Smart Too
Learn how Seat Pleasant, MD is taking the lead in Digital Transformation for Small Cities
1. Introduce the City of Seat Pleasant
2. Discuss our Smart City transformation, the value it brings, and the impact it had
3. Discuss our partnerships in this journey and our roadmap moving forward
Seat Pleasant, Maryland
“A Smart City of Excellence”
The World’s First Authentic Small Smart City
I am Mayor Eugene W. Grant, and have been Mayor of Seat Pleasant for 15 years!
Seat Pleasant shares a border with Washington DC.
Our City is a bedroom community with a population of a little more than 4700.
Our City is a transportation hub with easy access to public transit such as Metro, and is also in close proximity to 3 airports!
Given our small size, and limited resources, we must find ways to do more with less. That is why we are becoming a Smart City!
Our Smart City plan is focused on creating a Citizen-Centric Smart City that aims to improve the connectivity between citizens, businesses, and government.
Links to this presentation:
Our Definition of a Smart City
A Smart City is an evolving ecosystem that leverages smart technology, smart policies, and smart processes to improve the quality of life for stakeholders by making the city more equitable, resilient, livable, walkable, and sustainable.
Smart Cities utilize technology as a tool to optimize the infrastructure and resources in order to:
- Respond more effectively & dynamically to then needs & desires of stakeholders
- Make more informed policy decisions
- Promote accountability and transparency.
- Promote social justice, leading to equitable and just societies
Smart City Ecosystem
Connectivity includes finding ways to connect people with the local government and with the local community. Technology is not a requirement for fostering connectivity.
Knocks Down Silos
By facilitating “connectivity” and knocking down organizational silos, Smart Cities can improve collaboration and coordination across agencies and departments.
The technology side of “connectivity” refers to a Smart City’s network. A secure and fast network is required to facilitate the adoption and implementation of IoT technologies. In addition, many future IoT applications will require 5G networks in order to function effectively and safely. The network also allows us to tackle the digital divide that is often prevalent in rural areas and disadvantaged communities.
Smart Cities need to foster connectedness. This includes technology-based connectivity such as the implementation of IoT and 5G networks, as well as people based connectivity that aims to foster a greater level of trust, collaboration, and engagement between the citizens and the local government.
Data is essential for a Smart City. As it becomes more readily available across the entire organization, it begins to enable data-driven decision making that ultimately leads to better outcomes.
What gets measured, gets improved. One of the first steps for cities undertaking digital transformation is to begin to collect data where ever it is possible.
As data becomes more and more available, Cities can begin to leverage data analytics. Cities will be able to use descriptive analytics to understand what, when, and where.
Once a city becomes comfortable with descriptive analytics, it can begin to analyze the data for meaningful value. Cities can use the data to derive insights that would otherwise have gone overlooked. These insights can then be used to influence decision making and policy direction.
Evolving Smart City ecosystems facilitate better outcomes in many areas ranging from Citizen Engagement to the Environment
Transportation & Mobility
The Value Smart Cities Bring
i told you…
Smart Cities can “give back” each city resident 15 days (120 hrs) worth of time every year!
15 Days Worth = 120 Hours
Smart Transportation & Mobility (Hrs)
Smart Public Safety (Hrs)
Smart Health (Hrs)
Smart Government (Hrs)
Reduction in Fatalities (homicides, road deaths, fire deaths) due to improved Public Safety
Improve Efficiency of Gov Processes
Reduce Cost of Living by 1 to 3% annually
Reduction in Nighttime Crime as a result of Smart Lighting
Saved time (min) per citizen contact with government
Increased feeling of connectedness to the local community
Accelerated Emergency Response time
Increase employment by 1 to 3%
Increased feeling of connectedness to the local government
The Impact Smart Cities Bring
What we did in Seat Pleasant & How we did it
We developed and launched a mobile app that “pushes” government to where the people are. The mobile app provides access to city information and services 24/7. It also allows citizens to submit requests from service directly through the app (i.e. potholes, abandoned vehicles, vacant property issues, etc.)
Improved Response Time
Economic Development & Housing
We used the CGS Smart City Platform to estimate the true impact of blight and the vacant housing problem. We did so by bringing in data from the Maryland Dept. of Assessments and Taxation, Real Estate Data, Vacant Housing Data, Police Incident, and Public Works data and leveraging research done by the National Vacant Properties Campaign. We estimated that the city was losing upwards of $1M per year.
We’ve also seen property values in the city
Cost to the City
Increase in Property Values
Neighborhood & Commercial Compliance Dept
We are re-engineering many of our code enforcement processes including issuing code violation citations, business and rental license registrations, and vacant home registration. Based on our initial analysis, we’re expecting a 30 to 40 % reduction in the time it takes to complete any of these processes.
CGS – Brains of City of Operations
Situational Awareness for SPPD – A Cross Border Initiative
Smart Policing + Community Policing
The Police Department used the CGS Platform and its Public Safety capabilities to understand what is happening around our city and to identify criminal hotspots using the platform’s Predictive Policing capabilities. The criminal hotspots were used to inform patrol schedules and patrolling routes. Leveraging the CGS platform in conjunction with the city’s new policies to enhance the relationship between the department and its residents has resulted in significant reductions to crime.
- Reduction in Burglaries 37.5% 37.5%
- Reduction in Theft from Auto 71.42% 71.42%
- Reduction in Citizen & Commercial Robbery 70% 70%
- Reduction in Violent Crime 14% 14%
Cross Departmental Benefits
The Data we’re collecting, including traffic & vehicle data, weather data, crime data, and air quality data can be correlated together to reduce traffic congestion, improve public safety, public health, and spur economic development:
- Helps us sell the benefits of investing in a particular area
- Allows us to monetize data
- Understand the impact of traffic on prevalence of Asthma in our city
- Better estimate the lifespan of our roads
- Improve event planning
This summer, we will deploy our NEW CRU-22 Mobile Command Center in high traffic areas, which will be fed data from Verizon’s Intelligent Lighting, Intersection Safety, and Public Safety Solutions. This new unit is intended for rapid deployment and is equipped with the new Fotokite- a tethered drone with thermal and low light cameras, which can stay airborne for 24+ hours!
The Test Bed of Innovation
We developed a Citizen-Centric Smart City Roadmap for the City!
On April 12th, 2019 at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, we unveiled our first Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Strategic Plan, which lays out our vision and plan for implementation of Smart City technologies over the next 5 years!
Our success is predicated on strategic and meaningful Partnerships!
We developed an extensive Partner Network, that is helping us realize our mission! This network includes, but is not limited to:
On June 19, 2018, the City of Seat Pleasant signed a Memorandum of Understand with Prince George’s Community College and the Prince George’s Chamber of Commerce to ensure the success of the City’s Smart City Initiative. That agreement set forth a goal to develop a workforce that would be equipped to thrive in the world of Smart Cities.
I’m proud to say that in a short period of time, we’ve made tremendous progress towards this goal. Our team has met repeatedly with representatives from the Community College to discuss and review a preliminary curriculum for Smart City Workforce Development. The curriculum will focus on various Smart City applications, the Internet of Things, Data Science, Business Process Improvement, as well as Entrepreneurship.
Link to the City Website is https://www.seatpleasantmd.gov
Links to this presentation are
For more insightful information, check out the “Mayor’s Moment” Video Blog Series on Small Smart Cities
Want to learn more about Smart City transformation? Click on the “CGS” Image below for more information!