Glasgow: Self Sustaining Ecosystem

Glasgow: Self Sustaining Ecosystem


Glasgow City Council’s globally-renowned programme demonstrates how smart city initiatives and technology can improve quality of life, environmental sustainability and create economic growth in cities

Funded by Innovate UK, Future City Glasgow is the largest UK smart city investment programme.The city citizens are at the forefront of the innovative changes resulting in each demonstration area: City Data Hub, the Glasgow Operations Centre and City Integration demonstrators.

City Data Hub

Harnessing the power of data, Glasgow has created a city-scale, cloud computing based Big Data platform. This platform provides the technology foundation to allow organisations, business systems and Internet of Things (IoT) devices to publish open data. Making data open and accessible, the platform allows organisations to automate the publication of their data, reducing the time taken for citizens and communities to access information. The data available via the City Data Hub is used as the basis for improving community engagement and citizen participation. By opening up data to communities, Glasgow has enabled – increased utilisation of assets and services operating within communities; better sign-posting for members of the community to
the assets and services that may be valuable to them; empowerment of communities to make local decisions and take ownership of community concerns; and improving Community Planning across public, private, and voluntary sector organisations serving the community. With almost 400 temporal and spatial datasets from 60 organisations, the platform opens up a host of opportunities for the city including integrating and reforming how public sector services are delivered whilst proving a shared resource for the city. The city is demonstrating how open access to data and open data presentation can be used to — increase transparency, provide new insight into the city, improve community engagement, drive operational efficiencies and enable innovation in the city.

Glasgow Operations Centre
Glasgow Operations Centre opens up the potential of partnership working in the city. The state-of-the-art centre co-ordinates and manages the public space CCTV in the city, security for the city council’s museums and art galleries, traffic management, resilience and emergency response. The multifunctional centre provides the perfect location to manage major events in the city and was pivotal in the successful delivery of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.


Focussing on the themes of public safety, health, energy and transport the four City Integration demonstrator areas — intelligent street lighting, active travel, integrated social transport and energy effi ciency, promote intelligent use of assets. Street Lighting
Street lighting serves its obvious purpose, however, Glasgow has deployed intelligent street lighting in three locations around the city to demonstrate how the assets can be used to deliver savings. Using the assets as sensors the central management system is automatically alerted to potential failures in the lights resulting in proactive management of the assets. This coupled with the additional benefit of real time data collection and analysis through additional sensors measuring footfall, vehicle counting, air-quality and noise presents an opportunity for a more informed understanding of the city.

Active travel
Every city encourages its citizens to be active for health reasons and Glasgow is no different. Through the creation of cycling and walking apps Glasgow is equipping its citizens with the information they need to travel in the city, citizens can also volunteer their information through the app to help inform infrastructure decisions. The use of and presentation of spatial data is a
common thread throughout.

Integrated social transport
The Future City Glasgow Social Transport Demonstrator has a flexible and efficient, demand-responsive service for vulnerable citizens travelling to and from school or social care establishments. The demonstrator has introduced 140 in-cab Mobile Data Terminal (MDT) devices and introduced web-based scheduling software in order to optimise routes.

Energy efficiency
An energy app has also been created that allows citizens to understand how to make their properties more energy efficient, but also provides a city-wide spatial view of energy efficiency in buildings via two-dimensional and three-dimensional maps. The programme demonstrates how the innovative use of mega-trends such as Big Data, cloud computing, the Internet of Things, and mobility can deliver outcomes in the city. The programme Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “Future City Glasgow is a fascinating and wide-ranging programme which has catapulted Glasgow into a new league. Truly innovative use of technology presents immense potential for the city, its citizens, businesses and economy. The work of the programme has given us great insight into opportunities for enhancing life in the city.” Used together, this information can be hugely beneficial whether you are an entrepreneur looking for new premises, residents hoping to set up a community energy project or an IT developer looking to create an exciting new product. The Future City Glasgow programme provides the city with new enablers for integrating and reforming how public sector services are delivered, improving environmental sustainability, improving community engagement and stimulating innovation and economic growth for a smarter Glasgow.