SMART CITY THINKING PUTS GOOGONG ON THE MAPFriday, 1 November, 2019
Googong is set to become a showcase for technology-based urban living thanks to a $1.1million grant from the Federal Government’s Smart Cities program.
Googong developers (Peet and Mirvac) and Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council (QPRC) won the grant that will establish Googong as a showcase for technology infrastructure, helping reduce everyday community service costs including waste management, utility consumption and the maintenance of amenities.
The first element of the Smart City infrastructure is already in place with the installation of a smart wind turbine and solar-powered pole (pictured) - a foundation component in the new township’s high-tech backbone.
Googong Project Director Malcolm Leslie said Googong would be an innovator in smart city living – one of the first towns in Australia to have smart technology built in from the ground up.
The announcement comes hot on the heels of Googong taking out two wins in the prestigious Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) NSW Awards for Excellence, including best masterplanned community and best regional development.
Shortly, 5G ready “smart” light poles will be installed throughout the newest stages of Googong including its main commercial centre, which is currently being built, the second residential neighbourhood and key public areas like Googong Common.
“The ‘smart’ poles have the capability to be seamlessly fitted with network infrastructure to provide services such as free public Wi-Fi, digital wayfinding and surveillance cameras. They will also enable Council to remotely manage key services like waste management, car park usage, irrigation, lighting, BBQs and security,” Mr Leslie said.
“This is the way of the future. Instead of sending trucks to Googong to check when bins need emptying or if a street light has a fault, Council will know immediately and assign resources accordingly.
“Since Googong began it has been an innovative development which has made it a popular choice for thousands of residents. The Smart Cities program will continue this innovation with technology at the core of our community.”
QPRC Mayor, Cr Tim Overall said technology was a major driving force in our home life and across major cities and it was important to drive similar efficiencies within local communities by embedding smart infrastructure throughout the streets, landscapes and public areas.
“The Federal Government Grant provides an opportunity to create a technologically advanced city that is safer for our residents and sets a standard for other Australian cities who want to follow our lead,” Mayor Overall said.
“Working together with Googong, we will be documenting the installation, operation and management of this infrastructure and building a blueprint to help other developers in the future.
“Council is very committed to the smart cities movement, highlighted by the adoption of its Digital Economy and Smart Community Strategy and the installation of public Wi-Fi, parking sensors and environmental sensors in the Queanbeyan CBD.”
Implementation of the smart city infrastructure is expected to offer the Council long term benefits; potentially saving time and money on maintenance costs. Some of the proposed infrastructure will be installed as a ‘proof of concept’ to provide further information on which to base further investment decisions on the infrastructure.
The new system is expected to be operational, with smart poles installed, by June 2020.
PHOTO: Googong Residents Association Co-Presidents Candice Cox, left, and Clair Nunn-Furzey compare devices as Googong prepares to become one of Australia’s first wired “smart” cities.