Category Archives: SYNCHRONICITY

City Knowledge Exchange: Baseline Best Practice – Manchester

Electric Cargo Bike Hires: Oxford Road Corridor – Last Mile Delivery

Introduction

Manchester City Council received funding to purchase four electric-assist cargo bikes for use free of charge by local businesses and organisations in and around the Manchester Oxford Road Corridor. The bikes have been loaned to various local SMEs, as well as partner university departments. The are being used to make low carbon, convenient deliveries of everything from parcels, food, and Lego


Aim

As the Oxford Road Corridor has restricted automobile access, the City Council had an interest in trialling new solutions for last mile delivery for the local businesses along the corridor. By facilitating a cargo bike hire scheme, local SMEs and the universities along the corridor did not need to invest in upfront costs for cargo bikes and were able to trial the solution before committing to it.

Process

Manchester City Council received €40,000 from the Triangulum project. They procured the services of Manchester Bike Hire (MBH), a cycle logistics company. MBH offer a full wraparound service to bicycle users, with trial sessions to identify the most suitable bicycles and train riders. They also ensure the bicycles are maintained. These services, along with general logistics advice, have been invaluable.

Bicycle telematics log journey data programmatically via a web API.

Success Factors

The bikes have telematics installed. These monitor the journeys undertaken, and detailed information is available about journeys, as well as the emissions reductions achieved. The bikes are free of charge and available on a three month loan. They can replace a car or van journey, as well as being more convenient within the new traffic restrictions (no vehicles except bicycles,buses and taxis between 6am – 9pm) on Oxford Road. The cargo bikes can also save significant amounts of time on deliveries.

 

They also promote business’ ‘green credentials’.

 

Stakeholders

Who was involved and what did they contribute?

  • Manchester City Council – Facilitated the scheme between Manchester Bike Hire, the logistics company, the universities and local SMEs
  • Manchester Bike Hire – Provided bikes for the hire scheme
  • SeeSense – Cycle logistics, tracking and analytics
  • Universities – Participated in the scheme to decrease the emissions outputs, encouraged within university departments
  • Local SMEs – Participated in the scheme to improve last mile delivery down the corridor

 

Challenges & Lessons Learnt

  • Procurement: we wanted to work with a local company who could provide the proper bespoke service
  • Purchase vs Hire: we can usually “buy” things as a council – but if it’s a service then it can be more problematic – both within European funding and within the council – but we didn’t have the resource or experience to run a bike hire scheme ourselves
  • Moving from a “free” model to a sustainable business model
  • Making Data available from a proprietary API
  • A ‘cycling champion’ within partner organisations is key. For those not already regular cyclists, the electric-assist function and size of the bikes can appear challenging. Moving to cycling from driving is also a behaviour change, which is why a champion is vital.
  • Protective equipment, and whether this is required, has been challenging.
  • Storage of a larger than average bicycle out of the elements has also proved a challenge for small organisations.

 

Achievements

The bike hire scheme has allowed several SMEs to improve the logistics of their last mile delivery in response to the new traffic restrictions along the corridor without having to pay upfront costs for a solution they had not trialed. It has been very successful with the SMEs, more so than the university departments which were encouraged by the universities to participate. This is likely because the SMEs had a significant need to improve logistics due to the new traffic restrictions while the university still had vehicle access to alternate campus entrances from Oxford Road negating the necessity of innovative delivery solutions.

Current Status

The cargo bike hire scheme is an active project that the City Council are managing under the Triangulum project.

More information

Follow us on Twitter @Triangulum_EU or visit our website http://triangulum-project.eu

City Knowledge Exchange: Baseline Best Practice – Santander

Santander Smart Water Project: Improving Efficiency in Water Wanagement

 

Introduction 

Smart Santander is a project in which several neighbourhoods in the city have been provided with a water monitoring and supervision infrastructure, capable of offering information with the aim of optimizing, adapting and providing the city’s supply, management and optimization needs. The platform offers tools for decision making, providing integrated and processed network information on water composition, supply, consumption, flow rate, condition and operation of machines (pumps, valves, etc.), wastewater, and applied treatment. Sustainability starts with selection of the right technology platform, which helps users by giving them real-time information, analyzing data, making predictions, building reports and presenting dynamic graphs and maps for their control centers.

 

Aim 

Santander City Council and the water service manager of the city of Santander considered it necessary to improve the efficiency of water use by improving the infrastructure and implementing efficiency programs for different water uses, as well as reducing the vulnerability of the system to droughts and floods. Drought and flood supply and management systems are more sustainable and economically viable when natural ecosystem functions are conserved, improved and restored and when integrated into centralized resource management.

For this reason, it is necessary to improve data collection and analysis to project the impact on climate change, population growth and optimal consumption on water resources with the aim of identifying risks, impacts and possible contingencies, and thus improve service management.

 

Process 

In order to achieve the objective of improving service and service efficiency, it has been necessary to modernise the infrastructure, in terms of engineering works and to implement a software platform as the technological component of the project, which provides support so that the management of the water network is rigorous, efficient and offers the citizen a closer service.

During the analysis phases, information sources are established that will be integrated into the monitoring platform, which are considered critical in the management of the water cycle and which will allow the provision of information to optimise the service. The information sources were meteorological data, water supply network data, critical stations (sensors at pump station, pressure reduction), Tele-reading of home meters.

In order to integrate the information sources, the platform allows the development of new connectors for each type of equipment, providing historical information through the programmed shipments, as well as real time information, if the equipment allows it.

The connectors also segregate the information that generates compound values, so that aggregated and high level information (averages, highs, lows, fashions, etc.) can be made available, providing significant value to the different profiles involved in monitoring.

Santander’s water service manager, has the capacity to consult historical and real time data, where available, of all the signals stored in the system, with the aim of carrying out all types of analysis (trends, comparisons, predictions, alarms, exports, dashboards, reports, etc.).

 

Success factors 

  • Pilot selection: A new building area was selected, with a new network to minimise risks, in an area addressing specific issues (i.e. as it was close to the sea there was a need to control pumps during high tide)
  • Interaction with citizens: participation of citizens in controlling their consumption.
  • Municipality government fostered action
  • Willingness of the private company to make the effort

 

Stakeholders

  • Santander municipality
    • Municipality government as enabler and driver of the action
    • Municipality managers
  • Private company in charge of the water management service
  • Citizens

 

Challenges & Lessons Learnt 

The project has been a success from both the technological and citizenship perspectives. In fact, after a first phase in the outskirts of town, which had been selected to minimize risks, a second phase in the downtown was set up.

The most important obstacle is the cost per home, which is still high. To be cost-effective there is a need to improve information provided about the investment being made. Investment towards the internal efficiency of the water management service are taking place. However, in order to provide direct and individualized services to the citizens there is a need to put one element for each home, yet the upfront cost is still not outweighed by savings.

 

Achievements 

  • Monitorization platform

Santander’s water service manager can consult historical and real time data, where available, with the aim of carrying out all types of analysis. The collection of data from the different sectors makes it possible to analyse consumption patterns of the citizens.

The platform allows the creation of synoptics that represent the different sectors of the city, allowing the management company to visualize from the control center the network operation and the critical points of the supply.

  • Improved service to the citizens

The improved service offers information on graphics and curves on consumption profiles, alarms for possible leaks, news, etc. through applications for mobile devices. In addition, the management company will be able to issue alerts of breakdowns that may affect the water supply of the dwelling, allowing the citizen to adapt to the programmed cuts.

Another of the functionalities offered by the app is the possibility for citizens to send warnings about incidents on the network, either in its supply or on the public highway.

In addition, information panels displayed throughout the city offer citizens information on various parameters that affect the service. These information panels contain dynamic information that the manager can modify or publish from the same monitoring platform.

  • Improvements in efficiency

Having information about minute-to-minute power of water consumption pumps allows adaptation to real needs of the supply network facility, saving energy.

Furthermore, as water leaking in the supply network is proportional to water pressure produced by pumping action, there is also a reduction in water leaking, reducing pressure.  

In some specific situations, like the one explained before, in which high tide sea water invades the network, salinity sensors allow a wise use of the pumps in order to avoid struggling with the sea.

 

Current Status

The water management service company has activity in several Spanish cities and they have adopted the App framework for all its customers. This App provides advanced services only in those places in which this special monitoring enhancement has been implemented.

Technology watch is being made in order to find the right balance between savings and investment in order to maximize cost-effectiveness and extend the project.

 

More information
http://santander.es/content/nueva-app-permite-realizar-tramites-comunicar-averias-agua-desde-movil
http://santander.es/contenido/noticia/finaliza-segunda-fase-del-despliegue-gestion-inteligente-del-agua-se-benefician-cerca-8000
http://www.aqualia.com/es/web/aqualia-santander/conocenos/smart-water
https://www.cic.es/app/smartwater/
https://itunes.apple.com/es/app/smartwater-santander/id878706296?mt=8
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=es.aqualia.smartwater&hl=es
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3gbu9CP0WQ

 

City Knowledge Exchange: Baseline Best Practice – Milan

Sharing of the Milan Interoperability Platform: The reuse by the Municipality of Venice

 

Introduction

In 2017, the Municipality of Venice identified WSO2 as the most appropriate platform to develop its new interoperability system, in order to provide a better citizen experience for its digital services.  During the software selection process the inhouse ITC company of the City of Venice discovered that the Municipality of Milan had adopted the same platform in 2015. Following technical contacts and meetings at the end of 2017 an exchange process has been agreed and Milan shared the machine copies of the interoperability platform with the Venice IT offices. To avoid privacy and security issues the configuration administrator password and database contents were not shared. Venice received all the optimized solutions as just installed.

Aim

The general goal of reuse is that public administrations that are confronted with a specific problem can benefit from the work of others, by accessing solutions that have proven their value elsewhere. This is a virtuous process that generates cost and time-savings, and when this takes the form of a collaborative platform, the benefits can be even more extensive. This also makes it a major contributor to the development of a digital single market in the EU.

 

Process

The process was very agile. During 2017 the Municipality of Venice, through Venis S.p.A., the inhouse ITC company of the City of Venice, was looking for an interoperability solution through the support of a consultant that identified WS02 as the most appropriate one. Furthermore, they discovered through an online search of public calls for tenders, that Milan, Turin and Umbria Region in Italy had already adopted WS02 platform. Venis contacted Milan and after a meeting gave an expression of interest, which let to Milan sharing the architecture. Milan copied the database and Venis was able to install the full solution. The total process lasted less than 4 months, but in terms of working time, it was 2 working days for Milan and 7 working days for Venis (5 for installation and configuration).

Success factors

The success factors are the followings:

    • The process was really agile and fast; Major time and cost-saving for Venice
    • Venice received a solution that was already optimized; An open solution has been spread out with the possibility to create a collaborative platform.

 

 

Stakeholders

  • Municipality of Milan – Direction of Information Systems and Digital Agenda agreed to share the Interoperability solution adopted.
  • Venis S.p.A. – Venice Information Technology & Systems that designs, develops and manages the City of Venice IT System and Telecommunications network.

 

Challenges & Lessons Learnt

Venis was looking for a possibility of reuse and they discovered by searching online for bids to assign a consultancy for WS02 support. More information on the solution used and openness of municipalities in sharing those solutions could help to increase sharing and reuse.

The process was conducted without being properly communicated, which also could have helped increase sharing and reuse. A fundamental aspect of the re-use in the context of public administration is that they receive the software free of charge from the transferring administration, and acquire it by supporting only the costs of its adaptation, and not those of planning and realization. Furthermore, reuse and sharing can be effectively supported by collaborative platforms.

 

Achievements

The reuse of the Milan interoperability platform has produced a reduction of time resources spent by Venice: in 7 working days they achieved an optimized solution that for Milan costed 220 working days. This means a time saving of 97%. The achievement was of course in terms of money savings a part for the development of the solution and its optimization, but also for the external support.

 

Current Status

The use case is completed. Venis is using the interoperability platform and they are developing services that will be in production in June.

 

More information

www.comune.milano.it

www.venis.it