How smart cities are leading the charge

Smart cities
Smart-city initiatives are transforming urban transportation and infrastructure. (U.S. Department of Commerce Illustration)

The political landscape may be shifting in Washington, D.C., but when it comes to building the high-tech infrastructure for data and transportation, urban planners are thinking globally and acting locally.

That message came through loud and clear at “Connecting Cities, Data and Citizens,” an event presented March 15 at Town Hall Seattle by MIT Enterprise Forum Northwest.

Loreana Marciante, project manager for Vulcan’s Smart City Challenge program, said civic leaders shouldn’t wait for the federal government to come up with grand solutions to the infrastructure challenges they face.

“Just like everyone else, we’re watching what’s happening in Washington, D.C., and I don’t think anyone has real answers,” Marciante said. “Anything is possible in the next four years. But we do look at cities as the solution. … Those are where the new frontiers are going to come from.”

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributor to GeekWire and Universe Today, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," past president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing.

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