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The Gold Coasts Smart City ambitions

ByAndrew Bell

The City of Gold Coast has so much to offer its residents, from aquatic activities to an array of low-cost or free events for the whole family. And while these bring a great deal of pride to the city, we believe the future is cyber, and so we are poised to become Australia’s leading digital city by 2021.

The Digital City Program was established in 2016 with a mind toward the future. Not only will the successful implementation of the Program provide leading technological advancement for residents and visitors, there will be tangential benefits that will improve the city in a variety of ways.

For example, new security models and management systems will better serve the people of the City of Gold Coast and improve liveability and sustainability. Smart City initiatives will also help improve processes to enhance customer experience and reduce costs of operations.

Here are a few steps the City of Gold Coast is taking to become the leading digital city in the country:

Free public Wi-Fi

Already, the Surf Network is providing free public Wi-Fi to Southport, Surfers Paradise, Chevron Island, Broadbeach, and Coolangatta. Offering speeds close to 30 Mbs, users can access four gigabytes of data per day. Free public Wi-Fi means residents and visitors can get online via their devices anywhere in the city. You can get work done on your laptop in a park or download a new ebook at the pool. It’s presently Australia’s largest and fastest publicly-owned Wi-Fi network and is utilised by more than 8,000 users per day, and it’s growing every day!

Fibre optic network

The next stage of free Wi-Fi in the Gold Coast is the investment in a 864-core carrier-grade fibre optic network, which will provide some of the fastest internet service in the country. The first stage runs 21 kilometres along the light rail corridor from Helensvale to Broadbeach, with plans to add a 37 kilometre loop from Broadbeach to Burleigh Heads and Robina through Nerang to Parkwood where it will connect back to Parkwood by the end of 2019. In addition to private use, the City of Gold Coast is also offering its fibre optic networks to commercial organisations.

Internet of Things

The Gold Coast can also currently claim the largest LoRaWAN network in Australia. In layman’s terms, that means we have developed a network that will connect pieces of technology across the city and allow for a large-scale Internet of Things applications. This allows various electronics to communicate with each other to benefit the city. For example, the City of Gold Coast installed smart water metres that were connected via the Internet of Things. As a result, water consumption is tracked to help keep residents’ and businesses bills as low as possible, promote saving water, and reduce the capital cost of new infrastructure.

Telecommunications

In order to reduce reliance on third-party carriers and ensure we can provide users with the best possible service, the City of Gold Coast is investing in our own telecommunications network. We have historically hosted a large telecommunications network, but as the amount of data the Gold Coast uses is expected to grow by 40% per year for the foreseeable future, we’re bringing the network in house. And because the network is designed to allow use far greater than what we predict the city will require for operations, we can allow other carriers to tap into the spare capacity. This will increase the speeds of local internet services and allow for 5G and cellular coverage to roll out more quickly.

For all your Gold Coast property inquiries, contact Ray White Surfers Paradise today.

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