Smart Regions Spotlight: Baltimore, MD

Baltimore has put its money where its mouth is by doing more than talking about smart city technology and pushing real projects forward. One such project involves improved waste management. The city plans to install around 4,000 smart trashcans across the city at a price tag of $15 million. The trash cans will be solar-powered and equipped with Wi-Fi to notify workers when they need to be emptied. The goal of the project is to create a more efficient trash collection system.

Baltimore has had major issues with water billing, and Councilman Brandon Scott even claimed that the number one complaint from citizens is about the billing process rather than violence. In October 2016, the city began rolling out new meters that wirelessly transmit precise information back to the water department about usage. The end result? Homeowners can be sure their billing is accurate, the department has a way to defend themselves against false accusations of overbilling, and property owners won’t be unfairly foreclosed upon.

Hundreds of solar-powered pollution sensors--designed by engineers from the local Johns Hopkins campus for the Baltimore Open Air Project—have been stationed around the city.  The sensors take the form of small, solar-powered plastic cubes and can track pollutants such as nitrogen oxide and ozone. The WeatherCubes, as they’re called, send information in near-real time.

Daniel O'Leary