COQUITLAM, B.C., March 1, 2021 – Coquitlam has been named as one of the Smart21 Communities of 2021 by the Intelligent Communities Forum (ICF).
Coquitlam joins regional counterparts at the City of Maple Ridge and the Township of Langley, and international counterparts including Belfast, Northern Ireland, Moscow, Russia and Wellington, New Zealand in achieving this distinction. In total, eight Canadian communities are on the list vying to be named the 2021 Intelligent Community of the Year in October 2021.
Six Keys to Coquitlam’s Success
The Smart21 Communities are chosen by ICF based on quantitative and qualitative data on six key areas: connect, sustain, include, engage, innovate and work. Under the ICF Method, these factors determine a community’s competitiveness in economic, social and cultural terms.
Some of the achievements highlighted in Coquitlam’s submission include:
- Connect – QNet as a way of enabling high speed, low cost broadband coverage in high-density housing and commercial operations by leasing unused capacity in the City’s fibre optic network.
- Work – Club Diginista at Coquitlam Public Library offering coding, mobile app development, and other technology skills to girls aged 12-19.
- Innovate – Coquitlam’s Technology Roadmap as a high-level roadmap that fosters innovation and collaboration while guiding how the City chooses and uses technology to improve business functions.
- Include – Coquitlam Public Library as a way for all Coquitlam residents, regardless of ability to pay, to have access to technology, educational programming and lifelong learning.
- Engage – Coquitlam’s Viewpoint public engagement panel as a tool for residents to provide their feedback on City issues, plans and services.
- Sustain – Coquitlam’s Climate Action Program as a reflection of the City’s commitment to reducing GHGs.
For the announcement from ICF, including the full list of Smart21 Communities for 2021, visit https://www.intelligentcommunity.org/icf_names_the_smart21_communities_of_2021
Coquitlam as a Smart City
Smart cities are innovative places that use technology and data to create safe public spaces and improve how citizens move around, live and play, work and learn, participate in society, and interact with nature. Examples include better city planning and the use of technology to create greener buildings, smart roads and energy systems, and advanced digital connections for homes and businesses.
Coquitlam uses technology to enhance community life and City services across a wide spectrum of operations from online eServices, to free Wi-Fi access in City parks and facilities, to LED street lights.
For more information on these, and other technological initiatives that make Coquitlam a Smart City, visit www.coquitlam.ca/smart.
Coquitlam’s Technology Roadmap
Using technology to improve how the City works and delivers services is at the heart of Coquitlam’s Technology Roadmap, which guides how the City will choose, acquire and use technology for the next five years.
Adopted in February 2018, Coquitlam’s Technology Roadmap sought input from both external and internal stakeholders to identify opportunities where the City could leverage technology to improve its business functions and services to the Community.
Following the COVID-19 pandemic, the City’s tech team put its troubleshooting skills to work, addressing new and urgent needs, with a focus on remote services delivery and physical distancing.
The Roadmap was updated to prioritize:
- Remote work solutions
- Remote or physically-distanced service delivery
- Automated processes
- Better public services
- Improved cybersecurity measures
For more information on the Technology Roadmap, visit www.coquitlam.ca/smart.
About the Intelligent Community Forum
The Intelligent Community Forum (www.intelligentcommunity.org), headquartered in New York, is a global movement of 180 cities, metro regions and counties with a think tank at its heart and a mission to make everyone’s “hometown” at great place. ICF studies and promotes the best practices of the world's Intelligent Communities as they adapt to the new demands and seize the opportunities presented by information and communications technology (ICT). To help cities and regions build prosperous economies, solve social problems and enrich local cultures, the Intelligent Community Forum conducts research, hosts events around the globe, publishes books, and produces its high-profile annual international awards program. The Forum sponsors research Institutes in North America dedicated to the study of the movement, and national organizations in Canada and Taiwan, both home to many Intelligent Communities. In 2012 ICF was invited to participate at the Nobel Peace Prize conference in Oslo and in 2014, its model and work was recognized by the U.S. Department of Commerce under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which, according to the American government, was "aimed at creating a more flexible and responsive system of workforce development to meet the needs of employers looking to fill 21st century jobs.” The Forum’s membership is made up of 180 designated Intelligent Communities worldwide. For more details on the Intelligent Community Forum’s recent publications and programs, visit www.intelligentcommunity.org.
Manager, Information and Communications Technology