Smart City Living Lab public-private partnership formalized to enhance technological infrastructure downtown
Montgomery, Ala. – The City of Montgomery today, along with the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce, County Commission Chairman Elton Dean and Alabama Power’s Southern Division Vice President Leslie Sanders, announced the creation of a Smart City Living Lab in downtown Montgomery. It will feature fiber optic infrastructure, an expansion of the Open Data Portal, free public Wi-Fi in downtown areas, the conversion of street lights to LED and the City's already in-process deployment of smart parking solutions throughout downtown.
Montgomery leaders announced the smart corridor will be formalized through the creation of the Montgomery Smart Community Alliance, a public-private partnership focused on advancing smart city initiatives in the City of Montgomery. As part of its work, the alliance is coordinating a smart community strategic plan to identify community priorities and solutions that address them, with several initiatives already underway:
- The City of Montgomery launched its Open Data Portal in January 2017 and has already deployed several internal City initiatives to streamline processes and more efficiently and transparently track resources.
- The Montgomery Internet Exchange (MGMix), launched through a collaboration among Montgomery County, The City of Montgomery, research universities, Maxwell Gunter Air Force Base and the new Cyber College of the Air Force; is one of only four internet exchanges in the Southeast.
- Building on the City's award-winning pilot programs, like Rubicon and RoadBotics, officials will use new fiber infrastructure to build out even more solutions to better serve residents and visitors, including smart parking and potential public safety projects.
- The Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce launched Phase I of the free public Wi-Fi network called “MGMWiFi” earlier this month, with plans to expand in the next few months.
- Alabama Power is working to enhance energy infrastructure around the corridor and is also beginning the process of converting more than 22,000 street lights to LEDs to help improve public safety, increase uniformity, and create over $650,000 in savings over the next five years.
- “Beginning with a “smart” corridor from the capital to the riverfront, we are building a smart city from the ground up – using fiber and connectivity to seamlessly integrate into the existing environment, while providing a platform for the deployment of any number of smart city solutions,” said Willie Durham, Chairman of the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce.
- “This is all about partnerships and leveraging resources to provide a sustainable, prosperous, equitable and inclusive future for all Montgomery residents. We are seeking to build a fabric of connectivity that can support a multitude of applications and services by utilizing the same communications platforms, thus creating efficiencies, saving costs, and ultimately delivering more for those living in and visiting Montgomery,” said Todd Strange, Mayor of the City of Montgomery.
- "We are proud to be a partner in this effort and leverage resources and technology that can help improve Montgomery for all residents. The benefit of reliable connectivity can be used to support a multitude of applications and ultimately deliver more for those who live in and visit Montgomery,” said Leslie Sanders, Alabama Power’s Vice President of the Southern Division.
- “Partnerships and shared goals have always been at the heart of Montgomery’s success, and today we again stand together and take a bold step towards a more prosperous future for our citizens,” said County Commission Chairman Elton Dean.
Montgomery, Alabama USA fosters a business-friendly environment and understands that a healthy mix of large and small businesses constitutes the lifeblood of the city and region. A long history of trusted public-private partnership between the city, county, state and local business leadership creates an inviting business ecosystem. Montgomery is built on a dynamic history rooted in revolution as the center of both the Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement. On the forefront of cutting-edge development, Montgomery is attracting new businesses with its open internet exchange and opportunities for business growth, and new residents are coming for the city's work culture, transportation options and quality of life, including a revitalization of unique spaces in historic downtown with new attractions and diverse entertainment options. For more information, visit www.choosemontgomery.com.