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Cape Town is the Smartest City in Africa

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Cape Town is the Smartest City in Africa

The Mother City snatches yet another top honour for its forward-thinking practices 

The Smart City Playbook, a report documenting the best practices of cities around the world by Machina Research and sponsored by Nokia, has named Cape Town the smartest city in Africa.

South Africa’s second largest city by population has consistently been involved in conversations relating to creative innovations. Currently, the city lacks the incorporation of IoT (Internet of Things) in their ingenious strategies to improve the lives of Capetonians. The report states that there is potential to incorporate IoT applications in order to make the current processes even more efficient.

Cape Town has been specifically applauded for the efforts to contextualise these improvements according to the city’s needs. These strategies implemented in the city contributed to Cape Town’s high smart score:

  • E-government, which provides better access to more efficient service delivery
  • The provision of ICT skills, promoting social and economic development
  • Public Wi-fi and improving the city’s broadband infrastructure, reducing the digital divide
  • The use of CCTV cameras, making the city safer with 560 cameras situated in and around the city
  • Cape Town’s open data portal is the first of its kind in Africa
  • The use of smart-grid technologies at municipal levels, supporting the digital economy

The City of Cape Town’s implementation of the MyCiti buses has previously been named as one of the ‘anchor routes’ that the city has taken in order to make the city smarter. These anchor routes are defined as a single application to address a pressing problem (i.e. traffic congestion), and then adding applications over time. In June this year, MyCiti rolled out free Wi-Fi on their buses, but the city doesn’t stop there. MyCiti has also announced their plans to introduce electric buses in 2017.

The Smart City Playbook also includes innovations by smart cities such as Auckland, Bangkok, Barcelona, Berlin, Bogota, Bristol, Cleveland, Delhi, Dubai, Jeddah, Mexico, New York, Paris, Pune, San Fransisco, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Singapore, Tokyo, Vienna, Wuxi and, of course, our beloved Cape Town.

By Marian Volkwyn

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