TINA Vienna - Smart City Wien Agency
In the future cities will be confronted increasingly with global challenges like climate change, a severe shortage of natural resources, urbanisation and demographic development, hence determining the design of cities as living spaces and the quality of life for their citizens.
Taking these challenges into account, Smart City Wien was developed by the City of Vienna as a long-term initiative that looks at a cross-section of the city, covering all areas of life, work and leisure activities in equal measure, and includes everything from infrastructure, energy and mobility to all aspects of urban development. It defines the development of a city that assigns priority to, and interlinks, the issues of energy, mobility, buildings and infrastructure. The main goals of Smart City Wien are radical resource preservation, the development and productive use of innovations and new technologies along with a high and socially balanced quality of life.
Smart City Wien Framework Strategy and new initiatives
In order to make these goals legally binding, the Smart City Wien Framework strategy was adopted by the Vienna City Council in 2014 as a long-term umbrella strategy. The time horizon of the framework strategy extends to 2050 and focuses on necessary and often fundamental changes in the fields of energy, mobility or construction. The main objective is the best quality of life for all inhabitants of Vienna, while minimizing the consumption of resources. This will be realized through comprehensive innovations.
The Smart City Wien Framework Strategy aims to reach this objective by implementing Vienna’s urban sectorial strategies, reaching from the urban development concept, climate protection programme and urban energy efficiency programme to Vienna’s mobility concept and urban space concept. In 2015, two new strategies - the “Digital Agenda” and “Innovative Vienna 2020” - were added. Digitalisation and innovation are the main target areas of these strategies, which underline the growing importance of ICT solutions and innovative approaches in a smart city.
First steps towards implementation
The implementation process of the framework strategy started recently with a wide range of trans-disciplinary and international research initiatives and implementation projects within the areas environment, transportation, social inclusion and ICT. Here, experts from universities, governmental institutions and urban development agencies work together in finding solutions for challenges like the use of renewable energy sources or the creation of an urban lab for sustainable mobility in new urban development districts. Within the ICT and innovation sector, new methods for a “smarter” and more innovative city administration are being developed; Vienna’s approach was chosen among the most innovative strategies in Europe in the context of the “iCapital” award. Other achievements of the Smart City initiative cover new social housing programmes and resource-efficient renovation methods. In all these projects, despite the increasing use of advanced technology, the active participation and inclusion of Vienna’s citizens in decision-making processes play a very important role.
The outcomes of this implementation process – in terms of their contribution to the Smart City Wien Framework Strategy – are monitored by the City of Vienna within a pilot monitoring process that focuses on more than 50 indicators to measure the degree of achievement. From 2016 on, the Smart City Wien objectives will be monitored at a regular basis, in order to guarantee the successful implementation of the framework strategy. In addition, Smart City Wien seeks new partners for cooperation and collaboration on a European level and actively participates in transnational networks in order to exchange know-how with other cities.
New projects in the Smart City Wien
The DigitalCity.Wien Initiative started in 2014 as an independent and non-profit initiative of the administration of Vienna & dedicated ICT companies located in Vienna with its aim, to raise public awareness in the importance of IT in Vienna and to foster Vienna´s top position as a digital hotspot in Europe.
Numerous ICT topics are addressed in accordance and coordination with the “Smart City Wien Framework Strategy of the City of Vienna”. The aim is to take action against the shortage of skilled workers, to support digital competence and excellence, and particularly to inspire and promote women in IT professions. Other important objectives are an acute responsiveness to eruptive technology trends, and the strengthening of economic power in Vienna. An important feature of the initiative is its participatory approach - ideas and collaboration platforms form the basis of an active exchange between experts of research institutions and Viennese citizens. This gives rise to future Smart City Wien projects.
Vienna Main Station
The Vienna Main Station project spanning over 109 hectares is currently one of the most important infrastructure projects in Vienna. The new main station is being constructed as a through station with twelve tracks and ten platforms. In the construction process all the recyclable material – especially concrete demolition and ballast – was prepared on the premises and reinstated. With the aid of geothermal and solar energy systems, Vienna Main Station generates 13 percent of its entire energy needs directly on site. Overall, ÖBB at Vienna Main Station covers 100 percent of its power requirements from renewable energy resources.
Additionally, an entirely new urban district is gradually emerging around the station on the 59-hectare former ÖBB site. Altogether, approximately 5,000 apartments are being built to accommodate 13,000 residents, offices for 20,000 employees and space for hotels, shops, services and catering establishments.
In 2016, the implementation of the eTaxi project will start in Vienna; within the next two years 250 new electric vehicles will be used in the city. This project not only leads to an increased use of sustainable cars, but also offers new jobs for now unemployed taxi drivers and unemployed citizens looking to receive training for the job.
In the first phase of the project, 10 charging stations will be installed in Vienna; in a second phase until 2018 more charging points will be implemented. Within the first year the e-taxi drivers will receive electricity free of charge.
All these projects - and these are just a few examples - support on implementing Smart City Wien strategies and processes. This will be the topic of the future in order to make Vienna fit for coming challenges and maintain the quality of life standards.