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Data Collection & Management

Data collection is a key factor in establishing and enabling decision-making in smart communities. Ethical data collection, open data and data sharing and digital inclusion are key components of data collection and management. 

Key Concepts
  • Array of Things: An urban measurement project representing a collaborative effort among scientists, universities, federal and local government, industry partners, and communities to collect real-time data on urban environment, infrastructure, and activity for research and public use. 

  • Open Data: Anyone can access, share, and use open data to better connect with and interact with their city. Applications include real-time bus timetables, information on social housing, care initiatives, playgroups and public contracts.  

  • Digital Equity: Digital equity ensures all individuals have the information technology capacity "needed for full participation in our society, democracy and economy." Digital inclusion is about access and use of technology, but it consists of “activities” that are very human and personal: helping people learn basic computer skills in small groups or one-to-one; helping them find the most affordable internet services and devices available; providing technical and social support as they gain confidence and find uses for their newfound skills.

Peer Smart Community Projects

Burlington, VT: Energy Engage (2013) - Energy Engage is a consumer portal that shows electricity consumption and cost and provide energy efficiency tips using existing smart Meter Infrastructure. The portal is a part of Burlington's wider Net Zero Goal.


Cincinnati, OH: Cincy Insights (2019) - The Office of Performance & Data Analytics (OPDA) created an interactive dashboard portal, CincyInsights, to make city data visual, conveniently accessible, and user-friendly for all members of the Cincinnati community.


Chattanooga, TN: HCS EdConnect (2021) - The Chattanooga area is served by a 100% fiber-to-the-home network because of Smart Grid investment by energy and connectivity company EPB. Using this infrastructure the Hamilton County Schools have launched an initiative to bridge the digital divide and provide free internet services to about 28,500 economically challenged students for at least the next decade.


Louisville, KY: LouieLab (2017) - The LouieLab is Louisville Metro Government’s civic innovation hub for public-private collaboration, and coworking space that features a co-working room, training room, large and small conference room. This space is available to the public for events and co-working. Events held at the LouieLab must have a public benefit in order to reserve the space for free.


Buffalo, NY: BNMC Main Street Smart Corridor (2020) - The city will deploy smart community sensors in streetlights in select areas to capture data for various applications.

Kansas City, MO: RUBICON Smart City (2017) - Kansas City, Missouri has outfitted its 2.2-mile-long streetcar line with an array of new mobility technology including free public Wi-Fi, smart streetlights, smart traffic signals, and interactive kiosks.

Minneapolis, MN: Highway 55 Connected Corridor (2019) - This project included vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technology, which helps vehicles “talk” to infrastructure to improve safety and efficiency of roadway users.

Chicago, IL: Array of Things (2016) - The Array of Things (AoT) is a modular, open-source, network of interactive sensor boxes (nodes), collecting and returning urban data in real time to citizens, scientists and policy makers.

Stafford County, VA: The Stafford Testbed (2020) - A living laboratory that tests new smart technologies and currently focuses on drone application and systems for public safety and emergency management, cyber security & training, economic development & tourism, 5G technology & broadband expansion, smoke, particulate matter and forest fire sensing, and flood sensors.

Focus Group Meetings


In November and December 2021, the CDTC Smart Mobility Team held three focus groups with local government officials, staff and representatives from regional transportation organizations. The discussions focused on learning about the challenges of adopting emerging technologies, managing big data, integrating new technologies into existing organizations and bureaucracies, and other real and perceived limits on implementing Smart Cities projects. View the rebroadcast of the focus group on non-vehicular mobility and transit below. Specific focus groups may be viewed here


Key Takeaways Across Focus Group Sessions