By the year 2050, it’s expected that two thirds of the population will be living in urban areas. This means city services will face a significantly higher demand. So, what will the urban landscape actually look like in three decades’ time? It’s possible technological advancements will completely reshape our infrastructure. With the onset of big data, the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence we may find our cities begin to think like a human brain. Here are some of the advancements we can expect to see in the cities of the future.
The Revolution of Transport
Autonomous vehicles are a hot topic of conversation at the moment. It’s no surprise, this is a development which could entirely change the way we get from A to B.
Tech which today is in its infancy, will be fully developed by 2050. We’re expecting to see roads filled with self-driving vehicles ferrying residents to their desired destinations. We’re also expecting to see fleets of connected public transport pods which are both intelligent and autonomous. These will make set routes and timetables obsolete in the world of inner-city public transport. Passengers will simply hire a pod via app and board the closest vehicle heading in the same direction.
Big data will also have a huge part to play in all of this. Information will be collected and strategically used to influence behaviour, leading to more efficient and reliable roads.
Lower Fuel Emissions, Better Air Quality
The faultless efficiency of public transport is likely to see car ownership figures drop rapidly. This will give a huge boost to the fight to improve air quality. Today, the negative health impacts of poor air quality are becoming clear for all to see.
Data about air quality will be recorded in ways that will force industry and government to act. This will massively benefit the environment in the long run, influencing infrastructure design and the behaviour of citizens.
Smart and Sustainable Buildings
By 2050 we’re likely to see public buildings begin to gather data from their occupants and visitors. They will use this data to constantly improve their performance, efficiency and of course the general maintaining of temperature and safety.
Buildings will utilise developments like solar windows to gather their own energy. They will become self-sufficient. Any surplus energy gathered will be offered to local vehicles and buildings that are running low.
The Intelligent High Street
Through advances in Low Power Wide Area Networks – a network technology that provides connectivity for a vast number of devices over long distances - we’re likely to see the potential of the Internet of Things sky-rocket. This is going to completely reshape our High Streets.
Imagine a world where clothes shopping is dominated by augmented reality and interactive dressing rooms. Your assigned interactive mirror will gather data like your dress size, fashion preferences and upcoming social calendar to make intelligent suggestions personalised to you.
Forget queuing for a cup of coffee. Order by the touch of a button and have your favourite option delivered on your commute – made just how you like it.
More Time for What Matters
When discussing technological developments like this, there always follows a debate about the potential loss of jobs. We predict that instead of taking over from people’s employment, service will become far more personalised. The human element in any service will give the touch of quality. This technology will simply allow us to spend time on the things that really matter.
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