Smart Cities

Smart Cities Projects

The Highland Council are currently engaged in a number of exciting Smart Cities projects, as part of the 'Scotland's 8th City' Strategic Intervention. Designed to use data and technology to enhance the region's environmental sustainability, it's economic development, and the well-being of its citizens, these projects aim to turn Inverness into a true 'Smart City'.

All projects, with the exception of the public wifi, are funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Open Data

The Highland Council aims to improve the use and reuse of data both within and out-with the council, through the implementation of an Open Data portal. This portal will allow for the uploading, storage and reuse of disparate data sets, provided by the council itself and a series of external agencies. The perceived benefits are:

  • Increased transparency and improved relations and attitudes towards government
  • Improved council services through the use of open data
  • Fewer requests for re-use of data/fewer FoI requests
  • Re-use and increased value of data stimulating economic growth
  • Improved data quality/reduction of errors within data

Smart Waste

The Highland Council are engaging in a project designed to use hi-tech route optimisation software to create a better and more efficient approach to waste collection routes. Benefits expected are:

  • Reduction in operational costs
  • Potential reduction and redeployment of resource 
  • Real-time information and in-cab devices allowing for continuous improvement of service
  • Potential for application of software to a number of other council services

Smart Mobility

The Highland Council are involved in a collaborative project with HITRANS to provide a number of updates to the regions transport infrastructure, designed to make travel around the region as easy as possible. The project aims to implement the following improvements:

  • A flexible wireless mesh infrastructure allowing for smart traffic management, live traffic and public transport information
  • An improvement to bus stop signage, introducing smart elements, including NFC/QR codes and real-time information boards at selected stops
  • Improvements to the Far North Line
  • An update of parking meters, introducing smart elements to increase ease-of-use and flexibility for users

City WiFi (Ness WiFi)

The Highland Council has completed phase 1 of its public WiFi project. Dubbed ‘Ness WiFi’, the project aims to provide free public WiFi to both the Inverness city centre (Phase 1 and 2) and 14 towns across the Highland region (Phase 3), with a view to expanding this even further at a later date. Towns to be included in phase 3 of the project are:

  • Alness
  • Aviemore
  • Dingwall
  • Dornoch
  • Drumnadrochit
  • Fort Augustus
  • Fort William
  • Invergordon
  • Nairn
  • Portree
  • Tain
  • Thurso
  • Ullapool
  • Wick