The Importance of Technology in City Planning

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birds eye view of a large city for planning purposes

Today, smart cities are possible because of the powerful technologies that help them understand their customers. As a result, they can respond to their customers’ needs faster and more effectively. The importance of technology in city planning is an integral part of urban planning.

Get a Pulse of Your City

The first step to any plan is feedback. To get a better pulse of your city, it’s essential to build a voice of the customer. You can capture relevant data from a variety of sources. These sources include:

  • Customer surveys
  • Social media data
  • Call center notes

Once you’ve collected enough data, you can move on to the next step and create a customer persona for each type of citizen in your city. A customer persona accurately represents your ideal customers based on actual data about their demographics and behavior. The goal is to understand what they need at every point in their journey as they visit different areas within your city. 

Collect insight into how citizens use different parts of your city and what areas might need improvement based on citizens’ feedback. Once you have personas mapped out for both citizens and visitors in your city and exactly how they would use different parts of it, you’re ready to start improving!

Urban Planning

Urban planning and city design are more complicated than most people think. Urban planning affects the lives of everyone within the city. City plans are updated using information taken from past experiences with similar cities and other regions in their country. These models show what roads to build next, where new buildings should go, how many apartments or hotels should be built there, etc.

The only problem is that sometimes these plans don’t work out right away because all buildings aren’t created equal. Sometimes these buildings don’t always fit precisely where they were intended to go, leading to traffic problems, congestion, higher crime rates, and dire living conditions for many people. So, the best thing would be for planners to use technology so that better results could come about more quickly.

Parking Solutions

Items such as parking sensors aren’t usually considered when discussing technology, however the parking company can use a sensor to determine whether a vehicle is parked in a specific location or not. These technologies help alleviate traffic and make parking more efficient overall.

Automated parking systems can increase revenue for the city. It also allows cities to collect data on parking usage to plan accordingly for parking spots as necessary.

Innovation Is Key

Planning for contingencies is another way technology can help urban planners rethink their strategies. It’s impossible to predict every possible turn of events. In order to prepare for unpredictable situations such as natural disasters or crises, cities need methods that will allow them both flexibility and innovation when unexpected changes happen. With the help of technology, you can develop a plan for them anyway!  These insights are the first step in a data-driven cycle that helps planners make decisions for their cities. With today’s technology, it’s possible to obtain and analyze this data in real-time and turn it into new features much more quickly than traditional planning methods.

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