15 November 2017

Australian Government announces $415,000 to ‘switch on’ Geelong






Geelong has been awarded a $415,000 Australian Government technology grant to ‘switch on’ the city.

Geelong’s Smart Technology Project has been announced as one of 52 successful projects totalling $28.5million under Round One of the Australian Government’s inaugural Smart Cities and Suburbs Program.

Under the Program, funding will flow to communities across Australia, with 40% of successful projects located in regional areas.

The City of Greater Geelong will partner with the Federal Government and private businesses to install ‘smart street furniture’, which will provide free high speed wifi across the city, LED street lights with the capacity to boost brightness to reduce street crime, parking sensors to indicate parking availability, air and water quality sensors, as well as touchscreens and a public address system.

Assistant Minister for Cities and Digital Transformation Angus Taylor joined with Member for Corangamite, Sarah Henderson, on Wednesday to congratulate the City of Greater Geelong on its successful proposal.

“Smart street furniture will literally ‘switch on’ the city, meaning residents and visitors can easily plug in to a range of technologies – charging your electric car, digital signage to assist the all important tourism sector, street lights with sensors that react to anti-social behaviour,” Assistant Minister Taylor said.

“The Smart Cities and Suburbs Program wants to support clever ideas that fix local problems like street crime and lack of connectivity, and that can be replicated in other places, particularly in the outer suburbs of our cities and the regions.

“We’re actively looking at projects to support the Geelong region transitioning from traditional manufacturing to a more diverse digital economy.”

Ms Henderson welcomed the news and said the project would help drive innovation in Geelong.

“Geelong is a city of innovation and this grant helps set us up for a digital future,” Ms Henderson said.

“The Creating a Clever and Creative City Region project further entrenches Geelong at the forefront of innovative technology and adds to our region’s growing advanced manufacturing industry and leading carbon technology research.

“One of the important capabilities of this technology is that it allows collection of real-time data on what’s going on around the city, which will give local planners a great head-start,” Ms Henderson said.

In addition to the Australian Government’s $415,000 contribution, the City of Greater Geelong and private partners have jointly contributed $518,000 to see the project become a reality.

“The Geelong region has a proud history of innovation, creativity, and smart technology – as recognised by Geelong’s recent induction into the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

“So we’re delighted to be part of this very worthwhile project, as it demonstrates our values to embrace new ideas and better ways to work, and create a safe and healthy environment for all,” City of Greater Geelong CEO Kelvin Spiller said.

The $50 million Smart Cities and Suburbs Program is a key element of the Government’s Smart Cities Plan. More information on the Program and the Smart Cities Plan is available at https://cities.dpmc.gov.au/.

Round Two of the $50 million Smart Cities and Suburbs Program is expected to open in the first half of 2018.


November 15, 2017