Panasonic is building a smart city — the second in the world — right here in Colorado. It’s set to be complete in 2026!
The high-tech city will be built on an open space of land by Denver International Airport. Construction has already started along the 400-acre area, but it won’t be completed for several years. Panasonic hopes to have the smart city open and functioning by 2026.
It may seem odd that a company like Panasonic is heading this type of project when it’s more well-known for its consumer electronics products, but they’re also one of the world’s biggest providers in both the automotive and airline industries. Panasonic’s green technology is seen in the batteries for Tesla and Toyota, and the communication systems are used for commercial airlines across the country.
But, more notably, Panasonic was instrumental in developing the world’s first smart city in Fujisawa, Japan. The city opened back in 2014 and is a fully functional, self-sustaining community with smart home tech, electric vehicle charging stations, and advanced security systems.
This new Denver city hopes to do something similar. The project, which started back in 2016, is part of Panasonic’s CityNow solution that strives to make “modern society dramatically transformed by intelligent devices, real-time data, and responsive infrastructure.”
Some of the advanced technology the Denver project will have includes free Wi-Fi, security cameras, LED street lights, pollution sensors, and a solar-powered microgrid, which is said to power the district for 72 hours if an outage occurs.
There are also plans to have autonomous vehicles. Back in November 2017, it was announced that a hyperloop-inspired track will be constructed from downtown Denver to DIA; the $72 million project is part of CityNow.
Program Manager for the City of Denver Emily Silverman told Business Insider,
“The city’s population [is] growing by 15,000 residents annually. While this is great for economic development, it also means that Denver faces challenges like traffic congestion, air quality issues, and affordable housing shortages … We needed to think about how we plan to address these challenges while maintaining Denver’s character.”
There has been a lot of progress so far, with more to happen down the road. I know we’re all interested in seeing what this smart city has to offer and what it means for city development in the future.
What do you think of Panasonic’s plans for the Denver city? Do you think we’ll be seeing more of these high-tech communities pop up across the country in the next 10 to 15 years? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.