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Smart City Hamburg is becoming a networked metropolis

Many connectivity developments in the last two years. Good interim results

Technical innovations, cross-linked commerce and science and the compatibility of economy and ecology play key roles in Hamburg’s future development. The population is growing and the smart city is raising the quality of life through infrastructures that improve mobility, spare resources and reduce pollution.

Sensors and information technology like end gadgets, cloud and big data are gaining importance. In 2014, Hamburg reached a Memorandum of Understanding with Cisco Systems on implementing pilot projects in the city. And Frank Horch, Senator of Economics, presented interim results on Tuesday (May 24).

Agreement with Cisco

Horch pointed out: “Hamburg is an incubator for trends. In the past two years, we have developed outstanding projects with our partners”. These projects focus on application-orientated innovations for Hamburg as an economic location and people’s everyday lives. He added: “We are striving to make Hamburg a smart city. We have to face the challenge of growing populations in cities.”


Many milestones have already been achieved and include busses or lorries that communicate with traffic lights on approach or expansive verdant areas. Track switches on the port railway signal their maintenance requirements via sensors. Streetlights become brighter as soon as a pedestrian or cyclist approaches.

Praise from Cisco

“Worldwide, there are few smart cities like Hamburg,” said Christian Korff, of Cicso, adding, “Hamburg has created an excellent starting position in terms of smart city. It has a functioning smart-city ecological system with very promising pilot projects, the success of which depend on interdisciplinary co-operation. And in Hamburg, authorities, public institutions and firms in various sectors work successfully together.

Examples from UKE

Two projects at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) are really impacting the lives of people in Hamburg. An interpreter’s booth helps migrants and refugees talk to doctors and eases communication for everyone. A second project is a virtual classroom that lets seriously ill schoolchildren take part in lessons and prevents social exclusion.

Henning Schneider, CIO of UKE, said: “This project came about in close co-operation with Cisco, Avodaq and especially the Fördergemeinschaft Kinderkrebs-Zentrum Hamburg e.V and the Bildungs- und Beratungszentrum Pädagogik bei Krankheit in the school authority.” The great readiness and openness between the partners allowed us to use IT and let the children take part in their usual school lessons through video conferences.”


The Hamburg Port Authority’s (HPA) smartROAD project is an example of a test system for managing roads intelligently in the port. Managers can improve the use of resources and traffic flows and monitor infrastructure and the nearby environment.

Dr. Sebastian Saxe, Chief Digital Officer and Chief Information Officer at HPA, pointed out: “The smartROAD project allows us to test how we can influence the traffic flows in the port and surrounding factors like noise or carbon dioxide using the latest sensor technologies. The intelligent road is a piece in the overall concept of an intelligent port. The aim is to manage roads, railway and water and their traffic more intelligently and improve the port’s overall efficiency.”

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