San Diego Debuts New Smart City Apps & Intelligent Lighting Controls from Current by GE

Nov. 20, 2018
  • San Diego adds an additional 1,000 CityIQ* sensor nodes and rolls out first digital apps for world’s largest smart city IoT platform
  • Apps provide data visualization software for parking and traffic safety improvements, and support police and first responders
  • San Diego estimates an additional savings of $1.2 million annually from a first-of-its kind lighting controls utility interface and maintenance savings


BARCELONA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The City of San Diego, which announced last year it is building the world’s largest smart city IoT platform, revealed several industry-leading system enhancements at Smart City Expo World Congress (SCEWC) in Barcelona this week. In partnership with Current, powered by GE (NYSE: GE), San Diego is rolling out new digital applications to improve parking, traffic and public safety on city streets. In addition, the city has committed to adding another 1,000 CityIQ* sensor nodes plus a first-of-its-kind lighting controls utility interface that will boost LED streetlight efficiency by an additional 20 percent.


All told, the project’s massive digital infrastructure will include 4,200 new CityIQ nodes installed across 14,000 new individually metered LED fixtures. The initiative is expected to save the city an estimated $3.6 million annually in energy and maintenance costs while enabling a plethora of open data APIs and smart city applications that will help solve some of the city’s biggest challenges. Several city departments, including the Office of Economic Development, San Diego Police Department and Traffic Engineering and Operations are already working with CityIQ data to improve traffic flow and pedestrian safety.


“Our ability to leapfrog our smart cities technology ahead in both energy savings and scale is a testament to the hard work and ongoing collaboration of many public and private stakeholders,” explained Erik Caldwell, San Diego’s Interim Deputy Chief Operating Officer.


“We are proud of our progress so far in building a solution that will stand the test of time and enhance our citizens’ quality of life.”


Current is working with AT&T and Intel on the project. The CityIQ sensors are powered by the AT&T LTE network to provide secure, reliable connectivity. Intel® IoT technologies in each intelligent node provide compute power, help extract metadata, and perform multi-sensor fusion over a secured cloud connection.


First Apps Package for Cities

Current’s CityIQ* system collects real-time data and its open platform can be used to develop apps, visualize information, provide insights about the city’s operations and enable new citizen services. San Diego’s first app package includes Genetec™, a public safety application that aids in real-time response efficiency and Xaqt, a connected data and AI platform that provides insights into real-time and historical mobility patterns for traffic parking and pedestrian movement. CityIQ data can also enable expanded coverage of ShotSpotter, a gunshot detection app that helps first responders by capturing more than 90 percent of gunfire incidents with precise location information in less than a minute and CivicSmart, which leverages data to enhance on-street parking availability.


“San Diego once again is setting a great example for other cities to follow. Using this rich dense data, the city can develop plans and implement solutions that impact critical citizen issues – all through their app store,” said Austin Ashe, Current by GE, General Manager, Intelligent Cities. “The possibilities are limitless for San Diego to unlock the potential of the data and use it to benefit both city operations and citizens, today and in the future.”


Ashe said the turnkey approach of providing apps and CityIQ hardware together will save time and money for cities hoping to do what the app store did for smartphones - spawning entrepreneurship, creating jobs, generating revenue and solving problems.


Automated Streetlight Meters

Current and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) also announced the completion of a 6-month joint software development effort that allows Current’s Lightgrid* wireless control system to automatically interface and transfer streetlight energy usage to the SDG&E billing system. The first-of-its-kind system automates streetlight metering so that energy is billed on an actual consumption basis versus a flat dusk/dawn rate. That means municipalities are billed according to specific usage data, and in San Diego’s case, better accuracy from lighting controls translates to an estimated $250,000 in incremental energy savings.


“SDG&E’s use of third party meter data was new but coupling that capability with a consumption-based concept is pioneering,” Caldwell explained. “It is gratifying to continue to see our teams delivering solutions that directly benefit the communities we serve.”


To learn more about San Diego and the world’s largest IoT platform, visit


About Current, powered by GE

Current is the digital engine for intelligent environments. A first-of-its-kind startup within the walls of GE (NYSE: GE), Current blends advanced LED technology with networked sensors and software to make commercial buildings, retail stores, industrial facilities and cities more energy efficient and productive. Backed by a broad ecosystem of technology partners, Current is helping businesses and cities unlock hidden value and realize the potential of their environments.


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