Smarter cities thanks to technology
Three NSW councils are set to get smarter following Federal Government grants for research projects with UTS that will use data and technology to improve liveability and safety.
Parramatta urban renewal site Melrose Park
A joint project between Parramatta Council, PAYCE and UTS will monitor micro-climate changes during the construction of up to 6,000 apartments in Melrose Park.
Hundreds of sensors will measure humidity, temperature, noise, air quality and water run-off during the first two years of the project. This data will be fed back into the development’s design to inform things like of spacing, landscaping and potentially the orientation of the buildings.
City of Parramatta Council Lord Mayor Cr Andrew Wilson said: “We will capture a baseline before works begin, and will continue monitoring throughout to assess how effective Council’s protective building measures are.
“The data from this smart climate project will help the Council develop smarter approaches to planning and development across our vibrant City of Parramatta.”
The neighbouring community will have access to some of the data to allow them to become actively involved in the project, and the smart sensor network will be extended into existing streets around the development site.
Underpinning all of these smart climate benefits is ground-breaking use of M2M or the internet of things, via LoRaWAN. LoRaWAN is a network protocol that allows sensors to talk to the Internet of things without using 4G or WiFi. UTS has a platform and a process for rolling out the sensors, collecting and managing data and then using it to create 3D modelling.
“This is an extremely interesting test case,” said Senior Research Consultant at UTS Institute for Sustainable Futures' and TULIP Program Manager, Andrew Tovey.
Senior Research Consultant at the UTS Institute for Sustainable Futures Andrew Tovey said: “The Melrose Park project has the potential to revolutionise the way we do planning and architecture across the city, and across the country. It could well be a game-changer for smarter planning, leading to more liveable and climate-adapted neighbourhoods across Parramatta LGA.”
Smarter, safer beaches
Further north, a $910,000 government grant is funding a project between UTS, Northern Beaches and Lake Macquarie City Councils that will use smart beach technology to make beaches safer and improve public amenities.
Central to the project is the collection and real-time transmission of information about beach conditions, public amenities and services. Locals will be able to access a smartphone app offering up-to-the-minute information about surf and weather conditions at the beach, and even how busy it is on the sand.
Some sensors installed along the beach will monitor wave and swell movement while others will monitor beach activity to gauge when beaches are busiest.
Andrew Tovey said the project was “an exciting opportunity” for all parties involved.
“This project will explore a range of emerging smart technologies and world-leading research in a real-life and quintessentially Australian context,” Mr Tovey said.
“We look forward to working closely with lifeguards and communities to get this new tech working effectively and appropriately to make our beaches safer and more enjoyable than ever before.”
Pictured: UTS Senior Research Consultant UTS Andrew Tovery and Parramatta Lord Mayor Andrew Wilson at Melrose Park