Smart Regions Spotlight: Cary, North Carolina

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Cary, North Carolina is a forward-thinking town located in the state’s thriving Research Triangle that is utilizing emerging technologies to improve the lives of citizens and put their growing community of 160,000 people on the map.

The town’s multi-building Town Hall campus has become a testbed for smart city technology. Cary has invited private-sector involvement and innovation on the campus, particularly involving Internet of Things (IoT) technologies. The goal of the testbed is to use existing infrastructure in a controlled environment, which can then be translated across the city without disrupting the lives of residents. This approach allows for multiple solutions can be tested at once, with a smaller number of those tested solutions ultimately receiving a citywide rollout.

As a part of the city’s effort to track things like street lighting and parking, Cary has utilized Cisco’s Kinetic platform to display and analyze data. The Kinetic platform collects, integrates, and then displays data graphically from a variety of sensors and devices.

Smart city technology is an integral piece of the Cary 2040 Community Plan, which was adopted in January 2017 and lays out the long-term vision of Cary’s growth and development. For smaller cities looking for smart city solutions, Cary serves as an example of the power of public-private collaboration, uniquely-tailored implementation, and long-term development goals. 


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Daniel O'Leary