Wuhan, capital of Central China’s Hubei province, aims to become a leading city in terms of applying technology to improve the lives of its citizens, the vice-mayor of the city said.
Shao Weimin, the vice-mayor of Wuhan, made the remarks during a speech to the 2012 Smart City Expo World Congress held from Nov 13 to 15 in Barcelona, Spain.
The city is among the first batch of cities in China to pilot the smart city program, it is also the first city in the world to hold an open tender to global companies for intelligent city designs.
The concept of “smart city” was initially raised by IBM, before that various names, such as digital city and intelligent city, have been used to describe using information technology to run a city more efficiently.
According to IBM, a smart city is an instrumented, interconnected, and intelligent city. While Forrester, a research and advisory firm, defines smart city as “the use of smart computing technologies to make the critical infrastructure components and services of a city—which include city administration, education, healthcare, public safety, real estate, transportation, and utilities—more intelligent, interconnected, and efficient.”
Wuhan plans to finish the information technology infrastructure construction by the year 2015 and by the year 2020 a smart Wuhan will be in place, according to Shao.
The city has already launched several programs to improve citizens’ lives and offer more convenience. A municipal administrative service center which provides 24-hour self-service public service has been set up. Wuhan also launched a two-dimensional code food tracing system to ensure food safety and water resource monitoring system to protect the environment, Shao told the congress.