Innovation for Infrastructure

The construction industry will help drive the next-generation of infrastructure using technology. However, it will require all project participants—municipalities, contractors, subs, tech providers and more—to come together to improve how infrastructure is build and maintained.

Cities are beginning to recognize the importance of this. Such is the case in Chicago where a consortium called City Digital is identifying how technology will change infrastructure.

City Digital is a UI LABS collaboration and uses Chicago as a test bed for technology and demonstration. It is conducting pilot projects in four critical areas, including physical infrastructure, water and sanitation, energy management, and mobility.

Ongoing pilots include underground infrastructure mapping, smart green infrastructure monitoring, and smart building data services.

In September, London Mayor Sadiq Khan and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel toured the UI LABS facilities in order to experience new technologies with the potential to improve how infrastructure is managed and maintained.

Further announcements about the City Digital pilot projects highlighted during the visit are expected later this year. Planned pilots for 2017 include energy and mobility platforms.

In order to improve infrastructure—and leverage the latest technology—everyone involved in building, managing and maintaining the infrastructure needs to come together to identify strategies and best practices.

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