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Thursday, January 24, 2013 (read 520 times)
 

Barcelona: The Smartest City in Spain

by Dilek

Barcelona, one of the most exciting cities in the world, has been ranked the smartest city in Spain and the 8th smartest city in the world. Smart cities are environmentally friendly and technologically advanced.

According to “Smart Cities 2012”, a study published at the “Smart City Expo World Congress”, Barcelona is the smartest city in Spain. Various projects related to mobility, energy, environment and services have all been carried out in Barcelona. Besides Barcelona, the other cities ranked smartest in Spain are:

2.    Santander
3.    Madrid
4.    Malaga
5.    Bilbao

Followed by:
6.    Valladolid
7.    Zaragoza
8.    Vitoria
9.    San Sebastian
10.  Pamplona

Cities numbered 6-10 make up a group known as Aspirantes (Runners Up). This group is commended for their high score in the category of Important Decisions (city planning, the infrastructure, environmentally friendly buildings etc.) and the Concrete Actions category (how the city implemented these plans).

In the ranking of the World’s Smartest Cities, 44 cities comprising 150,000 inhabitants each were analyzed on five criteria:
1.    Development of Self-Financing Strategy,
2.    The Establishment of Public and Private Partnerships,
3.    Engagement of Citizens and Enterprises,
4.    Efficient Internal Development Process
5.    Foster Innovation.  

Barcelona earnt the “Smart City” title based on its town planning and environmentally friendly building technologies. The ultimate goal of the transformation of the Barcelona is to inspire more smart cities to be built. By introducing modern technology, Spain could follow in the footsteps of pioneer countries of “new-era” cities. Barcelona has integrated IT into various services, such as e-administration for schools, transportation, mobile phones etc. Barcelona has attracted private sector companies:  Endesa, Telefónica, Cisco, Telvent, Orange and T-Systems are among the companies involved in the change.

One particular project (District 22@ in Poblenou, St Marti) demonstrates how Barcelona transformed run-down industrial areas into powerful business locations. Old buildings have been replaced with new modern buildings. This initiative has attracted new companies to the area to buy and rent offices and warehouses. District 22@ started in the year 2000; since then, it has achieved significant success. Today, big name companies such as Yahoo!, Tuenti, Telefónica and Microsoft have settled in the area. As a result, inhabitants of Poblenou, St Marti have been provided additional career opportunities. By 2010, the district of Poblenou was home to 7,000 different companies employing 56,000 people. Of course, this new found wealth in the area gave real estate a boost. The new development is dissected by the Avenida Diagonal meaning that businesspeople have an easy route to the city centre. The avenue also creates a link between Plaza de las Glorias and Barcelona International Convention Centre.  

Barcelona is a remarkable city, not only in terms of architecture, culture and history but also with regard to technology and high quality living standards. It’s a great privilege to live in Barcelona!


Keywords: barcelona,spanish cities,smart cities,living in barcelona,technology spain

Posted In: Spain

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