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Glasgow wins £24m to become 'smart city of tomorrow'

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Glasgow has been awarded a £24 million government grant to showcase how a "city of tomorrow" could work.

The Technology Strategy Board (TSB) picked the Scottish city ahead of 30 other UK locations to host its 'Future Cities Demonstrator'.

People sending text messages on mobile phones

© Rex Features



Glasgow will demonstrate how providing new integrated services across health, transport, energy and public safety can improve the local economy and increase the quality of life of citizens.

The money will go towards creating better and 'smarter' services for Glaswegians, including apps to check whether buses and trains are running on time, as well as report issues such as potholes and missing bin collections.

Glasgow council will introduce new technology around networked CCTV to give real-time traffic information, and help reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.

Announcing the investment during a visit to Glasgow, Universities and Science minister David Willetts said: "With more people than ever before living in our cities, they need to be able to provide people with a better quality of life and a thriving economy.

"This £24 million investment will make Glasgow a city of tomorrow, demonstrating how cities can work more efficiently with a reduced environmental impact.

"We are in a global race and Glasgow can keep the UK at the forefront of innovative technology ideas. From transport systems to energy use and health, this demonstrator will play a key part in the government's industrial strategy and give real insight into how our cities can be shaped in the future."

View of Glasgow

© PA Images / Danny Lawson/PA Wire



The Glasgow Future Cities Demonstrator also aims to address Glasgow's pressing energy and health needs, such as developing systems targeting areas of fuel poverty and low-life expectancy.

Scott Cain, the TSB's project leader for Future Cities, said that Glasgow has some "quite extreme challenges".

"It has the lowest life expectancy of any city in the UK for instance - and the hope is that if we bring together energy, transport, public safety and health it will make it more efficient and a better place to live," he said

"The thinking behind it is to have somewhere in the UK where firms can look at the efficiencies, the investments and how you can address the challenges of a city."

Glasgow is not the only UK city to go smart. Birmingham, Sunderland and London are also starting to roll out technologies to make services run more smartly for citizens.

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