With over 9 million people living within a 1569 square kilometer area, Bangkok is not only the largest city in Thailand, it is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. While this presents a great challenge, it also provides great potential for Smart City initiatives in Bangkok to improve many aspects of the city’s functions.
I recently visited Bangkok to attend the annual GEOINFOTECH event hosted by GISTDA. During our regular commutes to and from the city center, we were mind-bogglingly stuck in traffic, regardless of time or day. Unsurprisingly, as the city continues to rapidly grow and develop, efficiently managing Bangkok’s traffic is both a high priority and a key challenge.
At the conference, I was fortunate enough to experience firsthand how serious the Thai government is about Smart City initiatives. With rapid implementation and adoption of solutions and technology, described as being in the beta stage, the government demonstrates a powerful drive to succeed.
Smart City Initiatives Bangkok
By helping manage traffic congestion, the implementation of the Internet of Things (IoT) could cut travel time, decrease road accidents, and reduce carbon dioxide emissions, thereby saving Bangkok an estimated $1 billion USD. To support new technologies and services through the IoT, Thailand has rolled out a Fourth Generation wireless broadband network which is both readily available and able to handle enormous volumes of mobile data traffic.
In addition to traffic management, Bangkok also focuses on increasing public safety as part of their Smart City initiative. The use of the wireless broadband network also enables closed-circuit TV and an array of mobile sensors to continuously monitor the city for safety, as well as measuring air and water quality. This continues the steady work towards improving security and quality of life in Bangkok.
What’s in the Future for Smart City Bangkok?
It was also interesting to see the heavy investment and involvement the Japan government has devoted in pushing the Smart City concept in Thailand. By tapping into their technology, resources, Smart City experience and technical know-how, Bangkok has a high chance for success in transforming from a Mega City to a Smart City. As part of this transformation, we highlighted M.App Enterprise, providing Smart Cities a platform for building and hosting their own cloud applications to address their unique requirements.
What’s in the future for Bangkok? Smart mobility. Smart power. Smart education. Smart healthcare. This is how Smart Cities are born, the way forward.