Ipsonas, the 2nd largest industrialized Municipality of Cyprus is seeking for challenging solutions related to public transport, parking accessibility and waste collection.
Ipsonas is the westernmost suburb of Limassol and has a population of around thirteen thousand people. Due to the relatively cheap land and its easy access from the highway it has become a highly attractive place to live, especially for young couples in the last couple of years.
While the rapid development and increase in visitors is welcomed by the Municipality and local business owners, the community of long-term residents has been adversely affected with more traffic, public transport and accessibility issues either from visitors accessing the area from the highway or permanently living and being active as residents of Ipsonas. Over the last ten years, the unprecedented increase of activity has backfired also to local business owners, who see visitor and customer satisfaction dropping because of issues like parking space unavailability as well as inefficient public transport availability and accessibility to the municipality infrastructures in general.
As recorded in Citizen’s Bureau reports of complaints reaching on average 200 per month from which over 30% of complaints are related to public transportation issues and accessibility while another 25% is related to waste collection. More specifically, complaints are related to damaged bus stations, insufficient notification about bus time schedules and generally the lack of quality of communication between the citizens and the transportation agencies-authorities. In the case of waste collection the main challenges the municipality faces is the timely collection of garbage and recyclable materials both at homes, industrial area and public spaces.
Ipsonas is looking for solutions to improve:
the efficiency of the public transports (mainly busses) and encouraging residents and workers to use them more; the availability of parking spaces and the collection of waste including recyclable materials.
Ipsonas Municipal area is a mixture of both residential and highly industrialized area, which is also a prime touristic destination for the 3 million of visitors to Cyprus. It houses 13,000 residents and most of the high-tech enterprises based in Limassol industrial zone.
Its industrial zones cover an area which is bigger than 2,000,000 m2, thus placing Ipsonas as the number one industrial area in the Limassol district.
The population of Ipsonas has increased steadily since the late 19th century and has the second largest growth rate of the country.
The target of the challenge is the long-term residents of the area and also enterprises owners,. Both residents and visitors suffer from insufficient communication and interaction with every transportation and accessibility provider. At the same time, small enterprises owners are affected by the same activities both in terms of abiding by municipal and local regulations, as well as the clientele access to limited parking spaces.
The Municipality has drafted its major strategic planning and urban restructuring to address the key challenges, as presented in Integrated Urban Development Strategy towards 2021.
The Municipality has invested significant effort aiming to improve and enhance the engagement between citizens and transportation services For example, Ipsonas Municipality has attended smart city hackathons in order to seek for possible solutions providing real-time information about free parking spaces in major municipal parking lots, taxi availability, traffic monitoring, smart bus station placements and waste/recyclable bins monitoring for timely collection by waste collection vehicles.
Many information and awareness campaigns also were conducted to inform citizens about waste collection routes and time plans, including recycling. These efforts cover only a very small spectrum of the digital services and technological advancement that are required to transform the municipal area into a smart hub.
Solution providers are expected to employ state-of-the-art Smart City technologies. Such technologies should use low-power and low-cost sensors to provide real-time accurate information about the:
bus transportation and traffic services (e.g. bus timetables, smart bus station placements, taxi availability, traffic monitoring etc.) for enhancing traffic management parking availability and
fill-level in waste and recycling bins for timely collection and improvement of public health.
Sensor networks should be operated in license-free spectrum and should have minimum interference in the municipal landscape.
The use and enrichment of mobile applications and sensor networks integrated with an IoT platform, is strongly encouraged.
Ipsonas Municipality has assembled a team of two key departments, led by respective Head of departments, to better assist Solution Providers understand and build appropriate solutions to given challenge. Municipality team along with the Innovation Facilitator will provide technical expertise and information to Solution Providers, as well as coaching and consult as needed to fully engage with the challenge. The team will also provide access to local stakeholders and community representative, in order to design customized and successful solutions. The municipality intends to continue cooperation with the selected Solution Provider to further test their solution with the opportunity to receive additional innovation services as part of Ipsonas Innovation City initiative.
Ipsonas Municipality Team
Mr Pantelis Georgiou, the Mayor has both a technical and commercial background in order to assist and further develop and support the solutions selected, combined with his personal motivation to transform the municipality into a smart hub. He will act as the link between the municipality, the consortium and prospective Solution Providers.
Mrs Troodia Aristeidou, Deputy Secretary of Citizen’s Bureau, has the complete picture of the complaints received and the corresponding departments or actions taken to resolve issues. She will be assisting Solution Providers in understanding the challenge and identifying key pains of citizens and enterprises.