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Kingston kicks off IoT pilot with smart snow plough service

An online map features selected ploughs on main roads, with different colours indicating when a road was last ploughed.

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The City of Kingston in Canada has launched a ‘Snowplow Tracker’ service as parts of its Smart City pilot programme with Bell.

 

IoT sensors are located on the ploughs to determine speed, idle time, GPS location and whether the plough is currently deployed and clearing the roads. The data travels over the Bell Smart City platform for the City of Kingston to monitor the timing of the plough activity and which streets have been cleared. Residents can also access the data on the city’s website to see when streets were cleared so they can plan their routes to work, school and elsewhere.

 

Online map

 

The online map, which shows a select number of ploughs clearing main arterial roads, is part of a larger nine-month Smart City pilot the City has developed in partnership with Bell.

 

The map features selected ploughs on main roads with different colours indicating when a road was last ploughed. When a plough is in motion clearing main roads, it will send frequent data that will be displayed on the map. Ploughs clearing residential areas are not shown on the Snowplow Tracker map, although will still be in operation.

 

IoT sensors are located on the ploughs to determine speed, idle time, GPS location and whether the plough is currently deployed and clearing the roads.

 

“Services like the Snowplow Tracker map delivered over Bell’s Smart City Platform illustrate how Internet of Things technology can improve City services for residents,” says Gary Semplonius, Bell senior vice president. “We look forward to future opportunities with Kingston to implement a broad range of solutions that leverage Bell’s advanced fibre and wireless networks to enhance city operations.”

 

Resident benefits

 

Kingston regularly sees heavy snowfalls in winter. The city says its 29 road ploughs and 16 sidewalk ploughs work continuously during winter weather events to clear over 1,800 km of road lanes and 600 km of sidewalks but some citizens still reportedly say services are too slow or inadequate.

 

“The Smart City pilot is all about leveraging technology to improve residents’ quality of life. This pilot will give residents the opportunity to see our snow clearing efforts in a new and exciting way,” said Kingston mayor, Bryan Paterson.

 

The City of Kingston entered into the Smart City pilot partnership with Bell in February 2018. It will introduce smart technologies across the city and runs until September.

 

An energy management application and digital kiosks were originally slated to launch last spring but have not yet rolled out.

 

“Additional smart technologies such as smart kiosks will be introduced to the city. More information about these smart technologies will be available in the coming months,” a spokesperson for the city said.

 

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