The Smart City concept is accessible to different municipalities in Africa
The conference ‘Platforms Smart Cities and data of the city’ was held on Thursday, April 07, 2016 in Casablanca, at the headquarters of Confédération Générale des Entreprise du Maroc (CGEM).
The issues of the development of urban platforms were presented to the participants of the event organized by E-madina and Morocco Numeric Cluster.
“The concept of a platform can be open to citizens by the collaborative platform. Today it is time for the city to determine its policy around the data,” said Phillippe Baudouin, head of Practice Smart City-unit digital Territory, IDATE DigiWolrd.
The actions made in this sense in the region of Grand Casablanca as well as future prospects were at the heart of the exchanges of the two panels in the program:
-Urban data: an intangible to enhance capital?
-Platforms data for Smart City.
Speaking in the first panel, Saad Azzoui, Director of heritage Lydec shared with UCLG Africa, his vision that the ‘Smart City’ concept is not restricted to the great common of the African continent.
Lydec , which manages the distribution of water, electricity, sewage collection and public lighting for the Region of Grand Casablanca (Urban Municipalities of Casablanca, Mohammedia and Aïn Harrouda), have developed tools that optimize investment and natural resources in the area.
«Generally, people think that smart cities need many financial resources, yet this not the case, said Saad Azzoui. A smart city is a city, which facilitates the life of its citizens; it is a city where I have access to data easily, where I can move easily, where there is a communication between elected officials, decision-makers, authorities and citizens. Thus, for him, “the small communes are also concerned by the concept of the smart city. We have to better understand the needs of populations and adapt the techniques that we will use the means we have. This is what we did with the Grand Casablanca,” he says.
This participatory approach that places the citizen at the heart of the device takes time. For two years, through the project “La ville de demain”, Lydec managed to work directly with elected officials, neighborhood associations, to put at disposal of the Grand Casablanca region, the tools: swart invest (rated investment needs, the application allows the tracked over 500 current constructions in the region), Smart Water (the application allows to modulate the water supply) and Smart Energy (allows to modulate the destitute and public lighting network energy bills).
The model of Greater Casablanca is applicable elsewhere, according to Azzaoui. However, we should take into ‘account the realities of the workplace. we should not copy the models”, he says.
The resolutions of the meeting ‘Platforms Smart Cities and the city data’ will be rendered in the form of a whitepaper to be published current July 2016.