There are so many ways modern cities make life miserable. From noise to traffic, the increasing cost of living, overpopulation, social exclusion, pollution, widening wealth gap, and a clear separation between man and nature.
Those who live in the city usually do so in a separate and isolated way from others, in small “boxes” that make it practically impossible to feel connected with other human beings. Things that are usually taken for granted, such as being in good health or breathing clean air become rare experiences.
Modern cities are built on economic models based on the unbridled consumption of resources, destroying ecosystems and the environment.
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Is there a better way of doing things?
Our cities, towns and villages COULD develop following sustainable principles, such as building with biocompatible construction and eco-sustainable materials, or through the intelligent use of available technologies, such as smart mobility, digital services, biomimicry and much more. The options are nearly endless.
Definition of Smart Village
Smart Villages are groups of people who live in mountainous, rural or sparsely inhabited areas, who use innovative solutions to improve their environment, economy and resilience, by leveraging the strengths of the area they belong to.
Aims and purposes of the Smart Village
The ultimate purpose of a smart village (or smart city) is for settlements to evolve and become resilient, decentralized, and above all, in harmony with the surrounding environment.
Smart Village as a tool for development of mountainous areas
Smart villages are an effective way of bridging the gap between wealthy cities and disadvantaged or remote & mountain areas (often lacking basic services), by using innovative technologies and solutions.
Smart Village Alpago
Smart Village Alpago is a movement that aims at improving the social, economic, environmental and mobility conditions of Alpago, its citizens and anyone who wants to visit.
Examples of effective practices and ideas for Smart Village Alpago:
- Use of renewable energies: achieving energy independence by installing wind generators in windy areas, or installing solar panels on homes or “dead zones” (such as rocks or steep areas that cannot be cultivated and exposed to the south).
Example: In Alpago on Mount Dolada there are already several metal installations & antennas of various kinds.
- Smart Agriculture: improvement of agricultural production through the use of technologies aimed at minimising human effort and impact (eg: robots, drones, artificial intelligence, and Internet of things).
Example: optimisation of local alpine products such as Alpago lamb, the Mame bean or the wines of the Dolomites from local Alpago winemakers.
- On demand public transport: also known as Demand Responsive Transport or Paratransit, it leverages algorithms and intelligent mobility to provide public transport in rural, remote and sparsely populated areas. There are numerous examples of DRT in Europe and all around the world.
Example: collaboration between local authorities, Dolomitibus bus company, ATVO bus company and F.S. Italian railways to fuel solutions of improved mobility across the region.
- Digitisation of services to the citizens: many services that still take place face to face could be digitised, such as some simple medical examinations and prescriptions, access to municipal registers and public services, registry offices, payments and bill portals, starting an online business etc.
Example: A case study in this sense is that of digital.tirol, a South Tyrolean initiative in this regard.
- Digitalisation of businesses and services: companies, businesses, hotels, B&B’s and restaurants could not only acquire new customers through digital channels by establishing an online presence, but above all, they could further monetise their customer base with digital experiences.
Example: remote wine tasting, tours and purchase of holiday packages, promotion of new products or services.
- Green mobility: incentive to use cycle paths, network improvement, use of bike sharing.
Example: installation of bike sharing stations in strategic points, such as the Alpago train station, Lake Santa Croce beach, Bastia roundabout intersection, Puos d’Alpago’s market square etc. This way, tourists could be travelling by train first, and could then reach the top tourist areas by bicycle in 10 or 15 minutes without using polluting cars or vehicles.
- Sustainable tourism: getting visitors and tourists in contact with local businesses, producers, winegrowers and farmers of local organic produce, giving unique experiences to the visitors and economic benefits to local entrepreneurs.
If you have experience in one or more of the subjects discussed above and would like to become part of this project, please contact us using the form below: