UNDP Maldives in partnership with Ooredoo Maldives and Housing Development Corporation has launched a project on smart cities. The ‘Smart Cities’ Project aims to offer innovative, smart solutions for urban challenges through ensuring that the technological solutions introduced in Hulhumale’ - the future smart city, remains inclusive and accessible to all of its population.
While the city has gone through a rapid transformation in terms of settlement and development, the social costs of such fast-paced development have yet to be analyzed by any relevant authority. The demographics of Hulhumale’, with its combination of residents living in state subsidized residential units and high cost land plots presents many challenges in terms of true community engagement.
The objective of a smart city is to create a city that uses innovation and new technologies to solve every day urban challenges. A common misconception surrounding smart cities is that the main focus of the smart city should be given to ICT technology and infrastructure. However, ICT and innovation alone is not enough to transform a city into a smart city. In fact, there are many other characteristics (such as social, economic, governance, and industrial, cultural) which should be considered along with the technological characteristics in a smart city definition. Rather than whole focus being given to technology and ICT it is seen as path to achieving the characteristics that make a smart city.
Under this initiative we are working on the following areas;
1) Smart mobility (Transport and ICT)
2) Smart Economy (Competitiveness)
3) Smart people (Social and Human Capital)
4) Smart environment (Natural resources)
5) Smart governance (participation)
6) Smart living (Quality of life)
Target group: Our smart city initiatives are aimed to positively impact all residents of Hulhumale’ particularly vulnerable groups such as women and youth.
Focus areas: Initial focus will be on the aspects of smart people, smart living and smart mobility.
Aim: To offer innovative smart solutions for urban challenges through:
1) Bridging the digital divide by making citizens more tech savvy
2) Alleviating social issues relating to resettlement
3) Make travel safer and more convenient by improving public transport and introducing alternative, climate friendly travel options.
4) Enable evidence-based, data-driven decision making and inclusive governance