Taming Traffic with Tech! An Atlanta Suburb Case Study

Done by Jeremy Solomon, uni: js5636

  1. Traffic is certainly a widespread issues that is not specific to any particular location, however many regions are worse off than others when it comes to delays on roadways. Traffic causes frustration and stress, increased emissions from vehicles, and wasted time and energy (perhaps the precursor to frustration and stress). I would considers these issues of civic engagement (possibly?) and health + safety.

2.

  • The town of Peachtree Corners, which is a suburb about 20 miles outside of Atlanta, has what they call a “Curiousity Lab” where they develop and implement smart-city-living measures, seems pretty cool and unique!
  • Through this Curiosity Lab, the town has partnered with Qualcomm and infrastructure firm Jacobs and are in the process of implementing Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2xE) technology on some of the town’s vehicle fleet and their roadways.
  • This technology sets out to dramatically improve road safety and roadway congestion. This is accomplished by altering traffic light patterns based upon real-time demand and congestion levels. Another cool feature is that it can alter traffic signals to help first responders move more quickly to emergencies.
  • Ford has made commitments to the effort by deploying C-V2X tech in ALL of its vehicles starting in 2022!

Article Title: Atlanta suburb deploys new tech to tame traffic

Website Name: Smart Cities Dive

Website Link: https://www.smartcitiesdive.com/news/atlanta-suburb-deploys-new-tech-to-tame-traffic/601085/

3. Stakeholders include:

  • City Residents
  • First responders
  • Car Manufacturers
  • City/State/Federal Legislators to help further integrate this technology

4. I mentioned that city/state/federal legislators are stakeholders that will need to use or will be impacted by this technology. to that end, being that this is such a far reaching technology, I think that the first step would be to engage lawmakers to start encouraging and/or subsidizing the plan.

As the involved organizations presented in this article have done, the second step would be testing this technology at a small scale in private applications because there are some certain dangers involved if things don’t work perfectly in a public setting.

Thirdly, this technology would need to be beta tested also at small scale in “the real world” to ensure that there is a seamless transition from private lab testing to public testing.

Nexii + Popeyes & Sustainable Restaurants

Done by Jeremy Solomon, uni: js5636

  1. The construction industry accounts for a substantial amount of emissions, however there are more streamlined ways to build infrastructure. The energy that is used to manufacture and transport materials to and from the site represent a lot of the emissions. Energy and waste would be the two areas of sustainability impacted by this technology.

2.

  • The article highlights Popeye’s rapid expansion in the British Columbia market, but specifically discusses their most newly constructed restaurant by Nexii. This restaurant was constructed in less than two weeks.
  • Nexii uses 3D printing software to manufacture the parts needed for the construction off-site, and assembles everything (kind of like a jigsaw puzzle) on site. This reduces emissions during the manufacturing (types of materials chosen), transportation, and construction phases. It also expedites timelines between 50% and 75%.
  • Popeyes leadership says that this type of construction can eliminate up to 30% of climate-related emissions resulting from their new-construction endeavors.

Article Title: Nexii partners with Popeyes® to deliver sustainable new restaurant

Website Name: Intrado

Website Link: https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2021/05/27/2237625/0/en/Nexii-partners-with-Popeyes-to-deliver-sustainable-new-restaurant.html

3. Stakeholders include:

  • City Residents
  • Developers/retail companies
  • Anyone impacted by the effects of climate change

4. The first step in deploying this technology is to engage with the companies that are performing these types of services and understanding which one meets your needs the best. I do not believe Nexii is the only company building structures in this way.

The second step is understanding all pertinent details and presenting them to the necessary parties in a clear, concise, and informative way to get the necessary approvals to move forward.

The final step would be choosing the building materials that both meet your needs and reduce your company’s carbon footprint effectively.

A Small Glimpse of Urban Farming Technology in Singapore

Done by Jeremy Solomon, uni: js5636

  1. Between the population exponentially increasing and the effects of climate change that are becoming increasingly evident, the issue of food insecurity is one that must be considered. These issues are exacerbated in urban areas because of the large population density and the lack of land for farming. I believe these issues can touch all of the categories of sustainability that we were given to choose from: Energy, Water, Waste, Civic Engagement, Safety and Health. However, I would consider the core category(ies) to be safety and health, and possibly waste.

2.

  • The article briefly acknowleges that Singapore is a land scarce city as well as the effects of climate change as the main reasons that urban farming innovation is a necessity.
  • The first innovation that is happening in Singapore is from Insectta. which is an urban farm that focuses on breeding black soldier fries for the purpose of ultimately turning food waste into biomaterial for uses in various industries. One single kilo of fly larvae can consume four kg of waste in 24 hours. The biomaterial is then somehow extracted from the larvae (the article does not go into process details) and used to produce components for electronics, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics.
  • Another technology that is discussed includes an Eco-Ark. This is a fish farm that is almost the size of two basketball courts that floats on the eastern side of Singapore. It uses treated seawater that is engineered to farm fish effectively and “safely”. It has solar panels on the roof that supply the farm with about 20% of its necessary electricity (not great…). There are also a number of additional safety measures taken, including producing their own oxygen, treating any water before it is deposited into the sea, and a “post-harvest” process that somehow improves the mortality of the farmed fish.
  • There has been about $45.2 million USD of Singaporean Government investment into farming technology, as well as $23 million Singapore dollars from the Sustainable Urban Food Production grant to pay for some R & D efforts.

Article Title: Singapore’s urban farmers seek high-tech solutions to turn waste into resources

Website Name: CNBC

Website Link: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/05/11/singapores-urban-farmers-seek-high-tech-solutions-to-turn-waste-into-resources.html

3. Stakeholders include:

  • City Residents
  • Trade Allies
  • Farmers

4. The first step in deploying a sustainable farming operation is to secure the necessary funding to complete the project. This can be from sources such as fedoral or local grants, but they can also come from private investment, or a public private partnership.

The second step would be sourcing personnel that is capable of building and maintaining such an operation. I.e. find some people smarter than you! You can’t do it all yourself!

Next, would be to secure a location to build. This would be very dependant on the amount of funding secured in step one! This would consist of searching, touring, negotiating, planning, etc.

EVTOL: What they are, when they’ll be here, and how they’ll change how you get around

  1. EVTOL’s will have the ability to address sustainability issues in several categories. It would continue the movement to electrify many delivery services, and potentially in the future, passenger transport. In doing so, delivery services could improve temporal and fuel efficiencies. This could have implications on issues of energy, waste, and the safety and health of the public.

2.

  • AVTOL stands for Electric Vehicle Takeoff and Landing, which is an acronym that refers to the vehicle’s ability to takeoff and land without the need of a runway. It’s basically like a very large drone in most cases, although the propulsion systems can vary a bit. These types of vehicles can be more efficient than helicopters in that they have wings so they fly more like a typical aircraft, so they take less energy to keep them moving forward at faster speeds.
  • There are many companies that are working on developing and implementing this technology from aerospace engineering firms to major companies that require intense logistics that are funding some of the R&D that is taking place. There are also some municipalities that are already testing this technology (one of them we discussed in class!).
  • EVTOL’s can potentially be used in the not-so-distant future to transport passengers and cargo over relatively short distances in a manner that is much more efficient that your standard transit methods now for reasons such as environmental impacts and time spent traveling.
  • EVTOL’s are supposedly super safe! And some firms are saying that they anticipate to implement these in public applications as soon as 2024.

Article Title: EVTOL: WHAT THEY ARE, WHEN THEY’LL BE HERE, AND HOW THEY’LL CHANGE HOW YOU GET AROUND

Website Name: Inverse

Website Link: https://www.inverse.com/innovation/flying-cars-are-already-here

3. Stakeholders include:

  • Travelers/Commuters
  • Logistics Companies (UPS, FedEx, USPS, Amazon, etc.)
  • Ride-Hailing Services (Uber/Lyft/Blade, etc)
  • Aerospace Engineering Firms

4. It seems that the steps taken thus far to begin implementing technology have been the proper ones. In order to roll out a technology as transformative as this, it must go through rigorous R&D including years of testing to ensure it is safe for the Public. Second would be the regulatory hurdles to actually get these aircrafts in operation – this is going to be a substantial speed bump. It seems an entire framework would need to be built to essentially have flying cars hovering above our neighborhoods and potentially cities with high-rise buildings; seems like a lot to address. Thirdly, the infrastructure would need to be built to allow these aircrafts to operate effectively. I am not entirely sure what this would entail, but I would imagine similar to building small heliports and some sort of air traffic control center to link everything together.

Electrifying Ride-Hailing in NYC

Student: Jeremy Solomon, js5636

  • Revel, a moped-sharing service that started in the outer boroughs of NYC and has made its way into Manhattan over the past year, plans on rolling out a service similar to Uber and Lyft that is made up of entirely electric vehicles. Their fleet is currently expected to consist of 50 Tesla Model Y’s from the outset.
  • While Revel says that they are working closely with the the Taxi & Limousine Commission (TLC) to file for the proper permits and obtain the permission they need to implement such a program, however the TLC has claimed that revel is attempting to avoid certain regulations and do things a bit more under the radar.
  • Revel refutes this point, however separately, opponents to this plan are noting that supply far outweights demand for ride-hailing in NYC at the moment, which would make it difficult for them to obtain the licenses required.
  • Uber and Lyft have vowed to electrify their fleets by 2030, but revel argues (and I happen to agree) that action needs to happen sooner than 2030 to avoid the worst effects of Climate Change and ICE combustion in cities.
  1. The sustainability issue that this technology addresses is one of health and safety of city residents. Widespread use of internal combustion engines (ICE’s) in urban areas ultimately contributes to health complications. including increased instances of asthma and lung cancer. ICE’s can also be considered an issue of sustainable energy; ICE’s are built on a framework of fossil fuels, a finite fuel source that is notoriously becoming phased out as a result of its substaintial contribution to Greenhouse Gases in the atmosphere, and thus Climate Change.

Article Title: Revel plans all-electric NYC ride-hail service, regulators say it’s unlicensed

Website Name: Smart Cities Dive

Website Link: https://www.smartcitiesdive.com/news/revel-plans-all-electric-nyc-ride-hail-service-regulators-say-its-unlicen/599481/

3.

  • City Residents
  • For-Hire Vehicle Labor Force

4. Because supply currently outweights demand for this technology (or for-hire vehicles in general), the first step to implementing it is to decommission enough ICE for-hire vehicles to improve the ratio of for-hire vehicles on the road and demand for them. Second would be to engage the community as well as the for-hire vehicle employees to ensure that this transition is done in a fair, equitable manner. Third is to obtain the proper permits and liase with the proper city officials so that the plan to convert this fleet is done entirely by the book.