Hong Kong unveils Smart City Blueprint with initiatives in 6 areas: Mobility

Hong Kong unveils Smart City Blueprint with initiatives in 6 areas: Mobility, Living, Environment, People, Government and Economy

On December 15, the Hong Kong Government released
the Smart
City Blueprint
(“the Blueprint”) for Hong Kong with a vision to build Hong
Kong into a world-class smart city. The Blueprint maps out development plans in
the next five years, aiming to enhance the effectiveness of city management and
improve people's quality of living as well as Hong Kong's attractiveness and
sustainability by making use of innovation and technology (I&T).

The Government had commissioned a comprehensive consultancy
study which made short-, medium- and long-term recommendations in six major
areas, namely: “Smart Mobility”, “Smart Living”, “Smart Environment”, “Smart
People”, “Smart Government” and “Smart Economy”. The Office of the Government
Chief Information Officer invited
members of the public
to give views on the recommendations made in the
report of the consultancy study on the smart city blueprint, during the period
from August 1 to September 30, 2017.

The Blueprint lists out the final strategies and initiatives
in the above mentioned six major areas. The Government has taken into
consideration Hong Kong’s challenges, unique local situation and strengths and
opportunities ahead, and maps out in the Blueprint its smart city development
plans in the next five years, and beyond.

Some highlights of the initiatives are as follows:

Smart Mobility

Source: Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint
  • Integrate existing e-transport
    applications into an all-in-one mobile app by 2018 to facilitate journey
  • Release real-time information of
    franchised buses through mobile devices by 2018 and information display panels
    at government public transport interchanges and covered bus stops by 2020;
  • Complete the installation of
    traffic detectors in all strategic roads to provide real-time traffic
    information by 2020;
  • Install new on-street parking
    meters to support multiple payment systems starting from 2019-20 with provision
    of real-time parking vacancy information;
  • In light of the results of the
    feasibility study, engage the public to develop a detailed Electronic Road
    Pricing Pilot Scheme in Central and its adjacent areas and its implementation
    strategy in 2019;
  • Facilitate trials of autonomous
    vehicles in the West Kowloon Cultural District and other areas as appropriate;
  • Establish bicycle-friendly new
    towns and new development areas;
  • Continue to take forward
    "Walk in HK" by providing a pedestrian-friendly environment; and
  • Provide hassle-free experience for
    passengers with a smart airport.

 Smart Living

Source: Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint
  • Develop a Faster Payment System by
    2018 which supports e-payments anytime and anywhere;
  • Facilitate a QR code standard to
    promote the wider use of mobile retail payments and bring greater convenience
    to customers and merchants;
  • Launch a $1 billion funding scheme
    in 2018 to support trial use and procurement of technology products by elderly
    and rehabilitation service units;
  • Set up a Big Data Analytics
    Platform by the Hospital Authority for facilitating healthcare-related research
    in 2019, and start adopting a smart hospital approach by 2020; and
  • Provide all residents, by 2020, a
    free electronic identity (eID) which is a single digital identity for
    authentication when conducting government and commercial transactions online.


Source: Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint
  • Phase down coal-fired electricity
    generation gradually and replace with natural gas and non-fossil fuel sources;
  • Apply renewable energy on a wider
    and larger scale based on mature and commercially available technologies with
    the public sector taking the lead;
  • Install LED lamps in public
    lighting systems progressively starting from 2017-18 and encourage retrofitting
    LED lighting for existing government buildings;
  • Promote retro-commissioning and
    building-based smart/IT technologies; and
  • Use remote sensing devices to
    monitor air pollution, cleanliness of streets and public places, and usage
    of litter and recycling bins.

Smart People

Source: Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint
  • Organise intensive training
    programmes on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education
    for curriculum leaders of primary and secondary schools from the 2017/18 to
    2019/20 school years;
  • Encourage industries to hire STEM
    graduates for research and development (R&D) through the Postdoctoral Hub
    programme and the enhanced Internship Programme;
  • Attract and retain more I&T
    professionals, especially in biotechnology, data science, artificial
    intelligence, robotics and cyber security. Launch a fast-track I&T talent
    admission scheme in 2018; and
  • Provide support to young
    entrepreneurs and start-ups to build a stronger I&T culture.


Source: Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint
  • Fifth generation (5G) mobile
    networks can offer ultra-high speed and high capacity, support device-to-device
    ultra-reliable/low-latency communications, and enable massive
    machine-to-machine communications for better implementation of the Internet of
    Things. Hong Kong is all geared up for the commercial launch of 5G services and
    applications in 2020;
  • Open up more public and private
    sector data in digital forms to facilitate research and innovation;
  • Adopt eID common login by 2020 and
    enhance the e-services user experience with the help of artificial
    intelligence, chatbot and big data analytics;
  • Implement the multi-functional
    smart lampposts pilot scheme starting from 2019 to facilitate collection of
    real-time city data to enhance city management and other public services;
  • Build a new big data analytics
    platform by 2020 which will enable real-time data transmission and sharing
    among government departments;
  • Revamp the government cloud
    infrastructure platform by 2020 to enable digital government services delivery;
  • Adopt Building Information
    Modelling for major government capital works projects starting from 2018 and
    develop Common Spatial Data Infrastructure by 2023.

 Smart Economy

Source: Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint
  • Facilitate the introduction of
    virtual banking as another model of service delivery;
  • Provide tourist facilitation
    services through smart technologies by 2018 at the Hong Kong International
    Airport, the West Kowloon Station of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express
    Rail Link and the Hong Kong Boundary Crossing Facilities of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao
  • Provide enhanced tax deduction for
    qualifying expenditure incurred by enterprises on R&D in 2018-19 to
    incentivise companies to increase investment in technological R&D;
  • Review the Government's
    procurement arrangements by 2018 to include I&T as well as design thinking
    as tender requirements to encourage local technological innovation; and
  • Review existing legislation and
    regulations so as to amend outdated provisions which impede I&T

The Government recognises that smart city requires collaboration
among the Government, industry, academia and citizens. The Government will
consider appropriate implementation models, including public-private
partnership, for smart city projects. New technology solutions will also be
tested in a smart region living lab.

The Steering Committee on Innovation and Technology chaired
by the Chief Executive has started operation to steer development of I&T
and smart city projects.

A Smart City Office will also be set up in the Innovation and Technology Bureau to take
charge of the overall co-ordination and monitoring of the progress and
effectiveness of smart city projects.

The Blueprint notes that smart city is people-centric and
that it should be built upon the needs of the people. To enable the public to
stay well informed of smart city development, relevant bureaux and departments
will provide progress updates on their work plans, as well as relevant facts
and figures from time to time. The Government will also review from time to
time the effectiveness of work and introduce new measures to bring in more
I&T applications to Hong Kong.

Read the Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint here.

Access the dedicated smart city portal here.

Featured image: Jim Trodel/CC BY-SA 2.0