Sensing lights : transforming street lights into a networked urban knowledge platform
Author(s)Álvarez Félix, Jesús Ricardo.
Transforming street lights into a networked urban knowledge platform
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Urban Studies and Planning.
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This work is subdivided into three academic papers that together form a coherent exploration of the phenomena of intelligent street lights and their potential applications as a new type of digital urban infrastructure. In the first paper, I review existing cases of cities that are digitizing their public lighting infrastructure. I analyze their various approaches to smart lighting and then propose a framework by which we can maximize their potential uses. For the second paper, I perform an urban demonstration that pairs street lights with a prototype intelligent, networked digital imaging and computer vision platform, in order to monitor the utilization of curbside space, currently utilized for parking in cities, which serves as an example of how to develop interoperability between different urban infrastructure systems. For the third paper, I investigate the policy dimensions of implementing such a system, including the concerns raised by industry leaders and city officials, as street lights become multi-functional sources of urban data, and the dilemma this may pose for existing institutional arrangements and stakeholder's networks. Seeking to maximize social benefits I conclude by proposing a series of recommendations aimed at hybridizing functions of public lighting and real-time sensing of the built environment in cities, for the creation of a range of new urban experiences and civic benefits across a variety of use cases for cities.
Thesis: Ph. D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Urban Studies and Planning, May, 2020Cataloged from the official PDF of thesis.Includes bibliographical references.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Urban Studies and Planning
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Urban Studies and Planning.