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Using Data and Technology to Better Serve Our Citizens and Community
Smart and connected communities use technology and data analysis to optimize city functions and drive economic growth while improving the quality of life for citizens.
Since 2016, Cary has been pursuing forward-looking, technology-focused solutions to the challenges of today and tomorrow. The initiatives described on this page are just some of the ways we're ensuring Cary continues to be North Carolina's technology town.
The projects in this section are in various stages of planning. We've added them here to give you an idea of what to expect in the months and years ahead.
Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)
Cary's Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) program will allow drivers to wirelessly connect to our ITS components and receive information that will help make their commutes safer and more efficient. The system can provide audible information to drivers through a variety of applications and vehicle computer systems (where equipped).
This information will include things such as how much time until the light turns green or red, when you're speeding and/or present in a school zone, if a pedestrian is crossing the road at a designated pedestrian crossing, and much more.
Implementation of the ITS system will take place through the second half of 2019 and wrap up in early 2020.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Counters
Cary routinely collects data on the volume of pedestrians and cyclists that use our greenway trail system. Using a variety of devices that can be relocated easily, volumes on all greenway trails in Cary are available for staff to use to determine which paths should be extended or connected, which will need maintenance soonest, and how many people are using our trails over time. This data is available remotely using cellular connectivity can be analyzed for anomalies or seasonal impacts in real time. Cary continues to expand this technology as greenways are added.
Cary is researching and developing an organization-wide drone program, leveraging technology to improve safety and efficiency. The Town continues to advance toward integrating this cutting-edge technology into operations by drafting a comprehensive standard procedure and obtaining approved funds in the FY2020 budget for necessary equipment.
Stormwater impacts each and every citizen in many ways. As part of our Smart and Connected Communities effort, a grid of rain gauges will be strategically placed across our 60 square mile area and the data they gather shared in an open source portal.
Additionally, a pilot on Walnut Creek will add water level sensors to monitor stream activity during storms and potentially act as an early warning during flooding.
The Town of Cary uses a Tridium-Niagra-based building automation system (BAS) to manage and monitor the heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), temperature, and other parameters at eight of our buildings, including our largest building, Town Hall. This helps us to closely monitor our energy use to diagnose issues remotely from a single portal, and to reduce the number of trips to different locations. Cary continues to expand this technology as new facilities are constructed.
2017 US Ignite Smart 50 Award – Simulated Smart City Lab
An App for Stopping Drone Deliveries over Prison Walls: Cary is partnering with Duke University to beta test a UAS detection system that gives end users a low-cost solution to detect unwanted drones. The goal is to increase situational awareness in North Carolina Prisons and local communities to detect nefarious drone flights.